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The Race for Paradise
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Table of Contents

Acknowledgements Prologue: Saladin Nation 1: The Abode of Islam 2: The Frightened Sea 3: Prey For the Sword 4: Tasting Our Might 5: Giving Lie To The Devil 6: Wolves and Lions 7: Let Them Be Our Eulogists Afterword: Buried Horsemen Notes Bibliography Index

About the Author

Paul M. Cobb is Professor of Islamic History at the University of Pennsylvania. He is the author of numerous books and studies, including a translation of the Arabic memoirs of a Muslim eyewitness to the Crusades published as The Book of Contemplation: Islam and the Crusades (2008). A recognized authority on relations between Islam and the West during the Middle Ages, he has travelled widely throughout Europe, Africa, and the Middle East. He divides his time between teaching in Philadelphia and farming in his home town of Amherst, Massachusetts.

Reviews

its emphasis as an "Islamic history" of the Crusades means that it is a useful addition to the marketplace. * Al-Ahram *
What Cobb creates is a broad geographic and chronological context for the Crusades * Times Literary Supplement, Book of the Year 2014 *
The 2014 book that most decisively forced me to rethink my understanding of the past * Theodore K. Rabb, TLS *
refreshing and illuminating ... a fascinating account * BBC History Magazine *
The Race for Paradise increases our understanding of the past, as well as of the world we live in. * The Writer's Drawer *
As Paul Cobb demonstrates in his splendidly detailed and timely narrative, Islamic authors and writers in Arabic showed a keen interest in the medieval Christian interlopers into the Muslim world, in political events and in the ideology of jihad that these conflicts revived. Cobb provides a useful corrective to ill-informed assumptions about medieval Islam and later Muslic recollections of the Crusades.
[A] lively and scholarly book * Peter Jackson, The Tablet *
[A] welcome contribution to the subject. * Svenska Dagbladet *
it is an important, paradigm-shifting work nonetheless. Future scholars owe Cobb their thanks. * Dan Jones, Sunday Times *
He [Cobb] tells that history very well. * Robert Irwin, Literary Review *
This is an excellent book - lucid, insightful and informative. Cobb brings a fresh perspective to contact between Muslims and Christians during the medieval period, energetically transporting us across Islamic lands from Cordova to Baghdad, via Palermo, Cairo, Jerusalem and Damascus. Sharply-chosen anecdotes cleverly illuminate life beyond the confines of holy war to give a broad and rewarding understanding of the true context and multi-faceted nature of this complex and highly important relationship. * Jonathan Phillips, author of Holy Warriors: A Modern History of the Crusades *
Lively and enjoyable reading, Paul Cobb's The Race for Paradise also offers new insights into the well-worn territory of Crusades history, particularly by showing how the Crusades were part of a broader penetration of Latin Christian powers into the Mediterranean world in the second half of the eleventh century. * Hugh Kennedy, SOAS, University of London *
Paul Cobb's The Race for Paradise proves why medieval European history is not the only domain for Crusades study. With a fluid style and superb knowledge of sources, Cobb masterfully enshrines the Islamic narratives, reflecting several genres of scholarship, as fundamentally informative for Crusader history, and that the latter ought to be seen also as reflective of dynamics within the Islamic world. Indispensable for anyone interested in understanding the Crusades and the Muslim World at that time." * Suleiman A. Mourad, Smith College *
[H]ighly original and above all a pleasure to read - a superb overview for the general and the specialised reader alike that sets the Crusades within the larger framework of Islamic history. * Konrad Hirschler, SOAS, University of London *

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