The Arab Center for Research and Policy Studies has published a new book, The Arab-Persian Cultural Nexus from the First to the Tenth Centuries of the Hijra (271 pages), by Moroccan scholar Rachid Yalouh. The book investigates the great interaction of Arab and Persian cultures during the first ten centuries of the Islamic calendar, a period of unprecedented cultural synthesis. Yalouh argues that cultural exchange between Arabs and Persians in the early Islamic period was not based on ideological dominance or exclusion, but flowed from the advent of Islam in Arab lands and from its spread through the Islamic conquests to neighboring areas, which quickly adapted the new faith, interacting and merging with it. The book starts with a review of pre-Islamic Persian history, and examines this interaction from the perspective of cultural anthropology. A theoretical framework consisting of religious, geographical, and temporal filters is proposed for analyzing such cultural interaction, providing a basis for discussing contemporary Arab and Iranian thinkers, such as Mohammed Abed Al-Jaberi, Abdolhossein Zarrinkoob, and Murtaza Mutahhari.
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