Few books in history have been as poorly understood as the Qur'an. Set down in a series of revelations to the Prophet Muhammad, the Qur'an is the unmediated word of Allah, a ritual, political, and legal authority, an ethical and spiritual guide, and a literary masterpiece.
In this audiobook, one of the launch titles in Atlantic Monthly Press' Books That Changed the World series, the distinguished historian of religion Bruce Lawrence shows precisely how the Qur'an is Islam. He describes the origins of the faith and assesses its tremendous influence on today's societies and politics. Above all, Lawrence emphasizes that the Qur'an is a sacred book of signs that has no single message. It is a book that demands interpretation and one that can be properly understood only through its history.
Bruce Lawrence's work is a beautifully written and, in these increasingly troubled times, invaluable introduction to and exploration of the core sacred text of Islam.
©2007 Bruce Lawrence; (P)2007 Tantor Media Inc.
"This book, like the book it studies, is meditative and unique, a lovely read for any spiritual person, Muslim or not." (Publishers Weekly)
A good overview of the Quran from history to modern day times as Muslims have understood it through the ages. The author provides an Islamic view point throughout the book.
"Not quite enough"
I was left with the feeling of an abridged book. I was expecting to gain an appreciation for the life and times of those associated with the writing and interpretation of the Qur'an but ended up with a just a glimpse. I suppose that if you have an understanding already it will make more sense, but then why would you be reading this book?
Michael Pritchard's narration sounds to me like a 1950's news reel. Although I had the same observation it did not bother me with "All The Shah's Men" and "Shadow Divers", but what he was reading there was outstanding. Late in the book the pitch of his voice drops which I found quite distracting.
"A few glimpses with historical context."
I like the historical context, but I find the citations of chapter and verse useless in an audio book. The citations seem to jump all over during the course of the book--I think to make various points, but I'd prefer a little more detail on the history and fewer citations.
I suspect it's just me, but I can't stand this narrator. I just realized I've listened to him before in another book, and I barely finished that book.
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