The Islamic synthesis
This chapter is slightly different from those on Judaism and Christianity.While it too focuses on exemplary texts – which reveal much about the connections between time, faith and history in a major world religion – it deliberately addresses a much broader span of time than those earlier chapters. It concerns itself not primarily with the point of origin of a religion, but with its development in a particular geographical region over a number of centuries. It also looks at the manner in which historical narratives about that period are later deployed for political and theological purposes. In this sense, the chapter is somewhat more historiographical in its analysis of a range of sources, rather than an exercise in historical theory or research focused on a single key text.