Muḥammad and the Qur’ān

Stephen J. Shoemaker

in The Oxford Handbook of Late Antiquity

Published in print October 2012 | ISBN: 9780195336931
Published online November 2012 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Handbooks

 Muḥammad and the Qur’ān

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  • Classical Studies
  • Religion in the Ancient World


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Western scholars have become aware that narratives concerning Muhammad and his earliest followers must be regarded with deep suspicion. Yet many continue to write as if nothing has changed. Introductory works on Islam or biographies of Muhammad offer a lightly edited, relatively uncritical version of the traditional Islamic narratives of Muhammad's life, the sīra traditions. Either one must accept the basic narrative of Muhammad's traditional biography, or abandon the sīra traditions and reconstruct the origins of Islam solely based on the Qur'ān. This article discusses the historical Muhammad and the Qur'ān; the collection of the Qur'ān; and Muhammad's message; and Muhammad, the Qur'ān, and eschatology.

Keywords: Islam; Muhammad; biography; sīra; Qur'ān; eschatology

Article.  15298 words. 

Subjects: Classical Studies ; Religion in the Ancient World

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