Introduction Delhi in Transition

Mushirul Hasan

in A Moral Reckoning

Published in print September 2007 | ISBN: 9780195691979
Published online October 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780199081691 | DOI:
Introduction Delhi in Transition

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One branch of Islamic literature often tackles didactic morality, referring especially to adab, manners, and ‘professional’ etiquette. This chapter describes the Sharif culture of nineteenth century Delhi. The author examines the writings of intellectuals such as Ibn Qutayba (AD 838–89), the Kufa-born thinker of Persian descent, who addressed matters of ‘righteousness’ and ‘clear understanding’ among his many other concerns. He also examines the fragments of a range of writings on Islam in India by intellectuals such as Nazir Ahmad's Al-Huquq wa al-Faraiz (1906) who have explore such topics as adab and akhlaq (good manners). Ilm or the theories and practice of Education are also described. The author also examines the work of Muhammad Zakaullah who wrote books in response to an official resolution that stressed prescribing moral treatises in government schools. The author concludes by charting the transition of Delhi through the works of poets/writers such as Sayyid Ahmad, Mir Taki mir, Mirza Ghalib and Bahadur Shah Zafar.

Keywords: adab; akhlaq; Ibn Qutayba; Muslims and politics; Nineteenth century India; Ilm; religious pluralism; Nazir Ahmad; Muhammad Zakaullah; Sharif culture

Chapter.  17500 words.  Illustrated.

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