chapter  VII
32 Pages

Revolution and Tradition: Some Aspects of the World of Scholarship in al-Andalus during the Almoravid and Almohad Periods 1

Among the main objectives of the Almohad movement, from the doctrinal point of view, was to establish again the link between the life of the Muslim community and the two fundamental sources of Islam, the Qur'an and the normative example of the Prophet. The Almohad caliphs governed the Islamic West and al-Andalus during the sixth/twelfth and the first half of the seventh/thirteenth centuries. Some of the biographical dictionaries composed in al-Andalus during the Almohad period indicate an attempt to break with the "Maliki" tradition. The world of scholarship in al-Andalus had undergone profound changes, beginning with the fall of the Umayyad caliphate during the fifth/eleventh century. The absence of the political and religious figure of the caliph favoured and reinforced the role played by a series of figures who enjoyed spiritual and religious authority among the masses, especially the Sufis and the holy men.