The Mihna. Deconstruction and Reconsideration of the Mu'tazilite role in the Inquisition.

Marco Demichelis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

The Miḥna has usually been attributed to the Mu‘tazilite theological school as expression of something unusual, a bid‘ah (Islamic innovation) related to a rationalist group of theologians that tried, in strict political cooperation with al-Ma‘mūn, to subvert the ‘Abbāsid caliphate system. The full support of relevant political and religious authorities, during the Miḥna, to the caliph’s purpose permitted at the ‘Abbāsids to post-pone for few decades, a period of decadence which started with the murderer of al-Mutawakkil in 861/246. It is significant to analyze the role played by the Mu‘tazilite school during the Miḥna, which if was theologically evident, it was also politically non-existent; a reconsideration of the importance of this rationalist school is necessary to make clearer who were the main persecutors during this short inquisitorial period in early ‘Abbāsid age.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)237-266
Number of pages30
JournalANNALI DI SCIENZE RELIGIOSE
Volume2013
Publication statusPublished - 2013

Keywords

  • Inquisition
  • Islamic Studies
  • Kalam
  • Mu'tazilism

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