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Ibn Khaldun

He is widely considered as a forerunner of the modern disciplines of historiographysociologyeconomicsand demography. He is best known for his book, the Muqaddimah or Prolegomena “Introduction”. His family, which held many high offices in Andalusiahad emigrated to Tunisia after the fall of Seville jaldun the Reconquista in Inbi Under the Tunisian Hafsid dynastysome of his family held political office; his father and grandfather, however, withdrew from political life and joined a mystical order.

His brother, Yahya Khaldun, was also a historian who wrote a book on the Abdalwadid dynasty and was assassinated haleun a ibn for being the official historiographer of the court. In his autobiography, Khaldun traces his descent back to the time of Muhammad through an Arab tribe from Yemenspecifically the Hadhramautwhich came to the Iberian Peninsula in the 8th century, at the beginning of the Islamic conquest: However, the biographer Mohammad Enan questions his claim and suggests that his family may have been Muladis who pretended to be of Arab origin to gain social status.

The haldum of such inventions was always the desire for political and societal ascendancy. Some speculate that of the Khaldun family and elaborate that Ibn Khaldun himself was the product of the same Berber ancestry as the native majority of his birthplace.

A point supporting that posits that his unusual focus on and admiration Maharlika Berbers reveals a deference towards them that is born of a vested interest in preserving them in the realm of conscious history. Islamic scholar Muhammad Hozien contends, “The false [Berber] identity would be valid however at the time that Ibn Khaldun’s ancestors left Andulsia and moved to Tunisia they did not change their claim to Arab ancestry. Even in the times when Berbers were ruling, the reigns of Al-Marabats and al-Mowahids, et.

The Ibn Khalduns did not reclaim their Berber heritage. His family’s high rank enabled Ibn Khaldun to study with the best teachers in Maghreb. He received a classical Islamic educationstudying the Qur’anwhich he memorized by heartArabic linguistics ; the basis for understanding the Qur’an, hadithsharia law and fiqh jurisprudence.

He received certification ijazah for all of those subjects. Following family tradition, he strove for a political career. In the face of a tumultuous political situation in North Africa, that required a high degree of skill in developing and dropping alliances prudently to avoid falling with the short-lived regimes of the time.

He could be sure of a positive welcome there since at Fez, he had helped the Sultan of Granada, the Nasrid Muhammad V, regain power from his temporary exile. InMuhammad entrusted him with a ha,dun mission to the king of CastilePedro the Cruelto endorse a peace treaty.

A few years later, he was taken prisoner by Abu Faris Abdul Azizwho had defeated the sultan of Tlemcen and seized the throne. He then entered a monastic establishment and occupied himself with scholastic duties until In that year, he was sent for to Tlemcen by the new sultan. He lived there for over three years under their protection, taking advantage of his seclusion to write the Muqaddimah “Prolegomena”, the introduction to his planned history of the world.

In Ibn Salama, however, he lacked the necessary texts to complete the work. There, he devoted himself almost exclusively to his studies and completed his history of the world. Ibn Khaldun said of Egypt, “He who has not seen it does not know the power of Islam.

Inthe Egyptian Sultan, al-Malik hxldun Barquqmade him professor of the Qamhiyyah Madrasah and the grand qadi of the Maliki school of fiqh one of four schools, the Maliki school was widespread primarily in Western Africa. His efforts at reform encountered resistance, however, and within a year, he had to resign his judgeship.

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A contributory factor to his decision to resign may have been ibnu heavy personal blow that struck him inwhen a ship carrying his wife and children sank off the coast of Alexandria. Ibn Khaldun now decided to complete the pilgrimage to Mecca, after all. At court, he fell out of favor for a time, as during revolts against Barquq, he had, apparently under duress, with other Cairo jurists, issued a fatwa against Barquq. Later relations with Barquq returned to normal, and he was once again named the Maliki qadi.

Altogether, he was called six times to that high office, which, for various reasons, he never held long. His doubts were vindicated, as the young and inexperienced Faraj, concerned about a revolt in Egypt, left his army to its own devices in Syria and hurried home.

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As he recognized Timur’s intentions, he did halcun hesitate, on his return to Egypt, to compose an equally-extensive report on the history of the Tatarstogether with a character study of Timur, sending them to the Merinid rulers in Fez Maghreb. Meanwhile, he was alleged to have joined an underground party, Rijal Hawa Rijal, whose reform-oriented ideals attracted the attention of local political authorities. The elderly Hladun Khaldun was placed under arrest.

He died on 17 Marchone yaldun after his sixth selection for the office of the Maliki qadi Judge. Al- Muqaddimah Introductionhaludn [25] is considered the first book.

Books Six and Seven give the history of the Berber peoples and the Maghreb. Concerning the discipline of sociologyhe described the dichotomy of sedentary life versus nomadic life as well as the inevitable loss of power that occurs when warriors conquer a city. According to the Arab scholar Sati’ al-Husrithe Muqaddimah may be read as a sociological work.

This social cohesion arises spontaneously in tribes and other small kinship groups; it can be intensified and enlarged by naldun religious ideology. Ibn Khaldun’s analysis looks at how this cohesion carries groups to power but haodun within itself the seeds — psychological, sociological, economic, hxldun — of the group’s downfall, to be replaced by a new group, dynasty or empire bound by a stronger or at least younger and more vigorous cohesion.

Some of Ibn Khaldun’s views, particularly those concerning the Zanj people of sub-Saharan Africa, [27] have been cited as a racist[28] though they were not uncommon for their time. According to the scholar Abdelmajid Hannoum, Ibn Khaldun’s description of the distinctions between Berbers and Arabs were misinterpreted by the translator William McGuckin de Slanewho wrongly inserted a “racial ideology that sets Arabs haldkn Berbers ihni and in opposition” into his translation of the Muqaddimah.

This means that the next cohesive group that conquers the diminished civilization is, halcun comparison, a group of barbarians. Once the barbarians solidify their control over the conquered society, however, they become attracted to its more refined aspects, such ubni literacy and arts, and either haldn into or appropriate such cultural practices. Then, eventually, the former barbarians bini be conquered by a new set of barbarians, who will repeat the process.

One contemporary reader of Khaldun has read this as an early business cycle theory, though set in the historical circumstances of the mature Islamic empire. Ibn Khaldun outlines an early example of political economy [ dubious — discuss ]. He describes the economy as being composed of value-adding processes ; that is, labour and skill is added to techniques and crafts and the product is sold at a higher value [ dubious — discuss ].

He also made the distinction between “profit” and “sustenance”, in modern political economy terms, surplus and that required for the reproduction of classes respectively. He also calls for the creation of a science to explain society and goes on to outline these ideas in his major work, the Muqaddimah. Ibn Khaldun diverged from norms that Muslim historians followed and rejected their focus on the credibility of the transmitter and focused instead on the validity of the stories and encouraged critical thinking.

Ibn Khaldun also believed that the currency of an Islamic monetary system should have intrinsic value and therefore be made of gold and silver such as the dirham. He emphasized that the weight and purity of these coins ihni be strictly followed: Ibn Khaldun’s epistemology attempted to reconcile mysticism with theology by dividing science into two different categories, the religious science that regards the sciences of the Qur’an and the non-religious science.

He further classified the non-religious sciences into intellectual sciences such as logic, arithmetic, geometry, astronomy, etc. He also suggested that lbni more divisions will appear in the future with different societies. Nonetheless, he didn’t think that laws were chosen by just one leader or a small group of individual but mostly by the majority of the individuals of a society.

To Ibn Khaldun, the state was lbni necessity of human society to restrain injustice within the society, inbi the state means is force, thus itself an injustice. All societies must have a state governing them in order to establish a society. He attempted to standardize the history of societies by identifying ubiquitous phenomena present in all societies.

To him, civilization was a phenomena that will be present as long as humans exist. He characterized the fulfillment of basic needs as the beginning of civilization. At the beginning, people will look for different ways of increasing productivity of basic needs and expansion will occur. Later the society starts becoming more sedentary and focuses more on crafting, arts and the more refined characteristics.

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By the end of a society, it will weaken, allowing another small group of individuals to come into control. The conquering group is described as an unsatisfied group within the society itself or a group of desert bandits that constantly attack other weaker or weakened societies. In the Muqaddimah, his most important work, he thoughtfully and scrupulously discusses an introduction of philosophy to history in a general manner, based on observable patterns within a theoretical framework of known historical events of his time.

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He described the beginnings, development, cultural trends and the fall of all societies, leading to the rise of a new society which would then follow the same trends in a continuous cycle. Ibn Khaldun did not create a perfect model for a society during his life, but he did think there was a need for a new model to manage society to ensure its continuous economic growth.

Also, he recommended the best political approaches to develop a society according to his knowledge of history. He heavily emphasized that a good society would be one in which a tradition of education is deeply rooted in its culture. The concept of asabiya has been translated as “social cohesion,” “group solidarity,” or “tribalism.

Ibn Khaldun believed that too much bureaucracy, such as taxes and legislations, would lead to the decline of a society, since it would constrain the development of more specialized labor increase in scholars and development of different services. He believed that bureaucrats cannot understand the world of commerce and do not possess the same motivation as a businessman. In his work the Muqaddimah, Ibn Khaldun emphasizes human beings’ faculty to think fikr as what determines human behavior and ubiquitous patterns.

This faculty is also what inspires human beings to form into a social structure to co-operate in division of labor and organization.

Another important concept he emphasizes in his work is the mastery of crafts, habits and skills. These takes place after a society is established and according to Ibn Khaldun the level of achievement of a society can be determined by just analyzing these three concepts. A society in its earliest stages is nomadic and primarily concerned with survival, while a society at a later stage is sedentary, with greater achievement in crafts.

A society with a sedentary culture and stable politics would be expected to have greater achievements in crafts and technology. Ibn Khaldun also emphasized in his epistemology theory the important aspect that educational tradition plays to ensure the new generations of a civilization continuously improve in the sciences and develop culture.

Ibn Khaldun argued that without the strong establishment of an educational tradition, it would be very difficult for the new generations to maintain the achievements of the earlier generations, let alone improve them. Another way to distinguish the achievement of a society would be the language factor of a society, since for him the most important element of a society would not be land, but the language spoken by them.

He was surprised that many non-Arabs were really successful in the Arabic society, had good jobs and were well received by the community. Advancements in literary works such as poems and prose where another way to distinguish the achievement of a civilization, but Ibn Khaldun believed that whenever the literary facet of a society reaches its highest levels it ceases to indicate societal achievements anymore, but is an embellishment of life.

For logical sciences he established knowledge at its highest level as an increase of scholars and the quality of knowledge. For him the highest level of literary productions would be the manifestation of prose, poems and the artistic enrichment of a society.

From other sources we know of several other works, primarily composed during the time he spent in North Africa and Al-Andalus. Ibn Khaldun’s historical method had very few precedents or followers in his time. While Ibn Khaldun is known to have been a successful lecturer on jurisprudence within religious sciences, only very few of his students were aware of, and influenced by, his Muqaddimah. These criticisms included accusations of inadequate historical knowledge, an inaccurate title, disorganization, and a style resembling that of the prolific Arab literature writer, Al-Jahiz.

Al-Asqalani also noted that Ibn Khaldun was not well-liked in Egypt because he opposed many respected traditions, including the traditional judicial dress, and suggested that this may have contributed to the reception of Ibn Khaldun’s historical works.

Ibn Khaldun’s work found some recognition with Ottoman intellectuals in the 17th century. However, some scholars believe that Ibn Khaldun’s work may have first been introduced to Europe via Ibn Arabshah’s biography of Tamerlane, translated to Latin, which covers a meeting between Ibn Khaldun and Tamerlane.