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Transformed LandscapesEssays on Palestine and the Middle East in Honor of Walid Khalidi$
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Camille Mansour and Leila Fawaz

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9789774162473

Published to Cairo Scholarship Online: September 2011

DOI: 10.5743/cairo/9789774162473.001.0001

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‘Abd Al-ghani Al-nabulsi

‘Abd Al-ghani Al-nabulsi

Religious Tolerance and ‘Arabness’ in Ottoman Damascus

(p.1) 1 ‘Abd Al-ghani Al-nabulsi
Transformed Landscapes

Camille Mansour

Leila Fawaz

American University in Cairo Press

Syria is traditionally known for its religious tolerance and as the birthplace of Arab nationalism. The themes of tolerance and “Arabness” run through al-Nabulsi's works and he drew inspiration in these areas from two antecedents. With regard to Arabness, al-Nabulsi built on the work of his older contemporary and fellow Damascene, the Shafi'i jurist Najm al-Din al-Ghazzi (1570–1651), whose writings were marked by a deep concern for the backwardness of the umma (the community of believers). The new Muslim rulers allowed the local Christians and Jews to retain their religious practices in exchange for the payment of a poll tax (jizya), which absolved non-Muslims from the duty of fighting for Islam.

Keywords:   Syria, tolerance, Nabulsi, jizya, Islam

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