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Der Islam

Journal of the History and Culture of the Middle East

Ed. by Heidemann, Stefan / Hagen, Gottfried / Kaplony, Andreas / Matthee, Rudi

2 Issues per year


CiteScore 2016: 0.21

SCImago Journal Rank (SJR) 2016: 0.195
Source Normalized Impact per Paper (SNIP) 2016: 0.682

Online
ISSN
1613-0928
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Volume 94, Issue 2 (Oct 2017)

Issues

The Dēnkard Against its Islamic Discourse

Kianoosh Rezania
Published Online: 2017-10-14 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/islam-2017-0023

Abstract:

The Dēnkard is the most exhaustive Pahlavi work ever produced in Zoroastrianism. Due to the large amount of information included in it, this body of work has often been referred to within the field of Iranian Studies as a ‘Zoroastrian Encyclopedia’. This article discusses two main points. First, it holds that it was not the intention of the Dēnkard’s authors and editors to compose a Zoroastrian encyclopedia in the 9th and 10th centuries. By contrast, the independent texts which serve as the basis of this compilation deal with other religions or present a Zoroastrian apologetic. It also claims that the Dēnkard has not been perceived as an encyclopedia in later Zoroastrianism. Second, the article scrutinizes the editorial process that led to this book. It furthermore argues that the Dēnkard, in its current form, has been structured to resemble the Zoroastrian world history comprising nine millennia. This article aims, moreover, to show that the last three books of the Dēnkard aim to depict Zoroastrians as belonging to the People of the Book. The article finally argues that the Dēnkard should be considered entirely a theological apologetic within an inter-religious context, which was mainly carried by Muslim theologians.

Keywords: Zoroastrian apologetics literature; Dēnkard; inter-religious contact; Early Islamic period; Iran and Islam

About the article

Published Online: 2017-10-14

Published in Print: 2017-10-26


Citation Information: Der Islam, ISSN (Online) 1613-0928, ISSN (Print) 0021-1818, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/islam-2017-0023.

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