Adrian Gully

in The Culture of Letter-Writing in Pre-Modern Islamic Society

Published by Edinburgh University Press

Published in print February 2008 | ISBN: 9780748633739
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780748653133 | DOI:

Show Summary Details


This book has brought to the fore some of the complexities and the beauties of the culture of letter-writing in the pre-modern Islamic period, and in focusing on the account of the secretary and his craft, has provided the reader with a narrative which evokes something of the literary, cultural and historical environment of that period. What was originally conceived as an idea to conduct a stylistic analysis of Arabic epistolary prose soon developed into an exploration of writerly culture in the 5th to 9th/11th to 15th centuries. This study has shown that literary culture surrounding epistolary prose evolved at a point in history of great intellectual vibrancy, and has also shown the nature of Arabic epistolary writing, which is dynamic. While the epistolary protocol of letter-writing was set out early in the life of Islamic society, the profile of the secretary and the function of epistolary communication changed and developed following the expansion of the Islamic world.

Keywords: letter-writing; pre-modern Islamic period; secretary; Arabic epistolary prose; writerly culture; epistolary prose

Chapter.  1785 words. 

Subjects: Society and Culture

Full text: subscription required

How to subscribe Recommend to my Librarian

Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content. Please, subscribe or login to access all content.