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The Victors and the Vanquished
Christians and Muslims of Catalonia and Aragon, 1050–1300

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Part of Cambridge Studies in Medieval Life and Thought: Fourth Series

  • Author: Brian A. Catlos, University of California, Santa Cruz and University of Colorado, Boulder
  • Date Published: May 2007
  • availability: Available
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9780521036443

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About the Authors
  • This revisionary study of Muslims living under Christian rule during the Spanish "reconquest" delves into the subtleties of identity under the thirteenth-century Crown rule of Aragon. Brian Catlos uncovers a social dynamic in which sectarian differences comprise only one of the many factors in the causal complex of political, economic and cultural reactions. Beginning with the final stage of independent Muslim rule in the Ebro valley region, he traces the subtle and often surprising transformation of Islamic society into mudéjar society under Christian domination.

    • Makes an important contribution to the comparative study of Islamic and Christian medieval society
    • Includes a series of case-studies which detail the daily lives of particular figures of the era
    • Covers a wide time-span and a wide range of topics including social, economic and political history, and sociological/anthropological theory
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    • Winner of the American Historical Association's John E. Fagg Prize for the best publication on Spanish, Portugal or Latin American History for 2005.

    Reviews & endorsements

    "an excellent piece of historiography"
    - Sam Conedera, History, UCLA

    "The author aims for, and delivers, far more than a simple narrative or description of the mudejar, or subject Muslim, population.... discussions of theory of intercultural relations, which are woven throughout the book, add depth and sophistication to the analysis of the extensive archival documentation undergirding this impressive study."
    -Medieval Encounters, Anne Marie Wolf, University of Portland

    "...such creative interdisciplinary forays are precisely what recommend this well-conceived, meticulously researched, and ultimately convincing book to an audience beyond scholars of medieval Spanish history."
    - American Historical Review, Adam J. Kosto, Columbia University

    "This is an ambitious, mature and comprehensive work on a topic that [Catlos] knows well. Undergraduate and postgraduate students along with specialists can learn a great deal from a book that put forward a challenging interpretation in a clear and concise style. The book is clever in structure."
    - The Medieval Review, Esther Pascua, University of St. Andrews

    "There is no doubt that this complex and intricate study of Muslim Christian relations, based on archival sources and a vast bibliography, is not only unusually well written, but it adds significantly to our understanding of the years 1050 to 1300 in Catalonia and Aragon. Furthermore, it is probably the most comprehensive account available of the social dynamics which made up medieval Spain before 1300... Catlos has chosen a difficult subject and has produced an outstanding contribution to the field, a volume which will long remain the standard reference for students of Muslim/Christian relations prior to 1300."
    - AARHMS Newsletter, Jill Webster, St. Michael’s College, University of Toronto

    "a ground-breaking study that brings to life a hitherto neglected culture and population, more than deserving of our attention. It is also a model of how such archivally based studies can illuminate a society for which few narrative sources are available... [there is] wealth of insights and argument contained in what is a remarkable, and also highly readable, work of scholarship."
    - EHR, Roger Collins, University of Edinburgh

    "Taken as a whole, this is an extremely important contribution to existing scholarship and to the ongoing debate over the nature of Christian–Muslim social interaction during the middle ages."
    - History, Simon Barton, University of Exeter

    "The Victors and the Vanquished serves at least two purposes: it is an ethnography of the mudejar Spain, and it helps us to see ourselves. the asymptotic relationship between Muslims and Christians in the Ebro river Valley can serve the twenty-first century by assuring us of our own ideological conditioning, even if we can never see it directly."
    -Michael McGlynn, Professor of Spanish at Wichita State University

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    Product details

    • Date Published: May 2007
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9780521036443
    • length: 480 pages
    • dimensions: 226 x 150 x 30 mm
    • weight: 0.71kg
    • contains: 7 maps
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    List of figures
    List of maps
    List of tables
    Note on the citation of sources, dates, places and names
    List of abbreviations
    Part I. Muslim Domination of the Ebro and its Demise, 700–1200: Introduction
    1. Thaghr and taifa
    2. Christians and Muslims: contact and conquest
    Part II. Muslims under Christian Rule: Introduction
    3. The financial and judicial administration of Mudéjar society
    4. Muslims in the economy of the Christian Ebro
    5. Mudéjar ethnicity and Christian society
    6. Muslims and Christian society
    Mudéjarismo as a social system
    Part III. Individual and Community in the Christian Ebro: Introduction
    Case study 1: fiscal and confessional identity: the Galips, templar vassals in Zaragoza (1179–1390)
    Case study 2: Franquitas and factionalism in Daroca: the Lucera family vs. the Aljama (1267–1302)
    Case study 3: litigation and competition within the Muslim community: the Abdellas of Daroca (1280–1310)
    Case study 4: administrative corruption and royal complicity: Abrahim Abengentor, Caualquem of Huesca (1260–1304)
    Case study 5: overlapping agendas: the career of Mahomet, Alaminus of Borja (1276–1302)
    Case study 6: the good, the bad and the indifferent: Christian officials in the Ebro region
    Personal histories: the individual, within the community and beyond
    Conclusions: Mudéjar ethnogenesis
    Appendix 1: currency of the thirteenth-century Ebro region
    Appendix 2: toponymical variants in archival documents
    Appendix 3: rulers of the 'Crown of Aragon', 1050–1300
    Select bibliography

  • Author

    Brian A. Catlos, University of California, Santa Cruz and University of Colorado, Boulder
    Brian Catlos is an Associate Professor in the Religious Studies faculty at the University of Colorado, Boulder, with cross appointments in Humanities, History and Jewish Studies. Previously an Associate Professor of History at the University of California, he completed his PhD in Medieval Studies at the University of Toronto in 2000, followed by three years of postdoctoral work at the Concejo de Investigaciones Superiores in Barcelona and the Institute for Medieval History at Boston University. He has served as President of the American Academy of Research Historians of Medieval Spain and is Book Review Editor (late medieval) for Speculum. His fields of research include medieval Spain and the Mediterranean, and ethno-religious identity and relations in the pre-modern Christian and Islamic worlds.


    • Winner of the American Historical Association's John E. Fagg Prize for the best publication on Spanish, Portugal or Latin American History for 2005.

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