By the 12th century CE, Avicennian philosophy was increasingly insinuating itself in the curricula of study of the educational institutions in the Islamicate world. Muslim theologians even compared its unprecedented and unparalleled diffusion to the spread of a disease – an ‘Avicennian pandemic’ (“pandemie avicennienne”), to borrow an expression coined by Yahya Michot. Among the disciplines that Muslim theologians looked at with the greatest concern is logic, which, as they complained, had made its entrance into the institution responsible for higher-level education in Islamic juridical matters, namely the madrasa. This paper aims to address the issue of the diffusion of Avicennian logic from a new standpoint, analyzing a source of information that has remained almost unexplored so far, namely the massive manuscript tradition of the Logic section of Avicenna’s Book of Healing (Kitāb al-Šifāʾ). According to the preliminary results of the survey presented here, more than 200 handwritten copies – either partial or complete – of the Logic of the Healing are extant to date. These copies were produced over about nine centuries and disseminated throughout the areas under Islamic influence, from Al-Andalus to India. Drawing on the methods of material philology, the study of the manuscript copies of the Logic section of the Healing can provide us with a wealth of information about the circulation and reception of Avicennian logic in the Islamicate world. Furthermore, the study of the work’s manuscript tradition is expected to increase our knowledge of the exegetical and teaching practices surrounding the Logic section of the Healing through the analysis of the scientific marginalia preserved in the manuscripts of the work.

The “Avicennian Pandemic” in Context: Insights into the Spread of Avicenna’s Logic in the Islamicate World

Silvia Di Vincenzo
In corso di stampa

Abstract

By the 12th century CE, Avicennian philosophy was increasingly insinuating itself in the curricula of study of the educational institutions in the Islamicate world. Muslim theologians even compared its unprecedented and unparalleled diffusion to the spread of a disease – an ‘Avicennian pandemic’ (“pandemie avicennienne”), to borrow an expression coined by Yahya Michot. Among the disciplines that Muslim theologians looked at with the greatest concern is logic, which, as they complained, had made its entrance into the institution responsible for higher-level education in Islamic juridical matters, namely the madrasa. This paper aims to address the issue of the diffusion of Avicennian logic from a new standpoint, analyzing a source of information that has remained almost unexplored so far, namely the massive manuscript tradition of the Logic section of Avicenna’s Book of Healing (Kitāb al-Šifāʾ). According to the preliminary results of the survey presented here, more than 200 handwritten copies – either partial or complete – of the Logic of the Healing are extant to date. These copies were produced over about nine centuries and disseminated throughout the areas under Islamic influence, from Al-Andalus to India. Drawing on the methods of material philology, the study of the manuscript copies of the Logic section of the Healing can provide us with a wealth of information about the circulation and reception of Avicennian logic in the Islamicate world. Furthermore, the study of the work’s manuscript tradition is expected to increase our knowledge of the exegetical and teaching practices surrounding the Logic section of the Healing through the analysis of the scientific marginalia preserved in the manuscripts of the work.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/20.500.11771/19901
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