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The Cross and the Crescent: Christianity and Islam from Muhammad to the Reformation

3.55  ·  Rating Details ·  151 Ratings  ·  19 Reviews
Richard Fletcher is one of today’s most renowned medieval historians. In his latest book, he offers a brilliant survey of the relationship between the Islamic and Christian worlds from the seventh to the sixteenth centuries. He shows how, despite long periods of coexistence and overlap, religious misunderstanding between “the peoples of the book” has been present since the ...more
Hardcover, 208 pages
Published January 26th 2004 by Viking Adult (first published 2003)
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Adalberto Queiroz
Feb 16, 2013 Adalberto Queiroz rated it really liked it
Shelves: religion
Li com grande interesse a tradução deste livro de R. Fletcher em português, trad. de Andréa Rocha (1), sobre as relações entre o Islã e o Cristianismo, dos tempos de Maomé até à reforma Protestante.
O que me entusiasmou a partir para a leitura do segundo livro deste autor ("The Conversion of Europe: From Paganism to Christianity, 371-1386 AD", ainda não traduzido em português)foi seu estilo.
A proposta de Fletcher é contar a história com o propósito de alcançar o leitor leigo e não ficar falando p
Katherine 黄爱芬
Saya bingung dgn determinasi buku ini. Setiap paragraf ke paragraf berikutnya tidak ada koherensi satu sama lain. Bab demi bab juga sama, tidak ada korelasinya. Ironisnya, inti cerita tidak sama dgn judul buku, relasi antara Islam dan Kristen sepanjang waktu selalu penuh ketegangan, peperangan dan pada masa damai juga dipenuhi syak wasangka dan saling tidak peduli. Dan sesama penulis sejarah saling menjatuhkan dan menjelekkan pihak agama yg lain. Kesimpulannya, menunggu perdamaian antara kedua a ...more
Lauren Albert
Such a short book on such a large subject is bound to be cursory. It was interesting and well-written but definitely for people who haven't read anything about the topic before.
Jul 02, 2009 John rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Very well-written. Very informative discussion of the relationship between the Christian and Islamic worlds in the Middle Ages.
Jun 19, 2007 Victoria rated it it was amazing
Shelves: thesis-research
I loved this book! It is an easy read, but it is very informative--a perfect overview of Christian/Muslim relations.
Mar 26, 2015 Jan rated it really liked it
Shelves: history, islam
Richard Fletcher does, indeed present a balanced and very well supported picture of the early encounters between Islam and Christianity. I was unaware, given all the hysteria and finger-pointing of today, that the Muslims paid very little heed to the Crusades. The Muslims had a vast empire, and considered the Crusades pinpricks against their borders. So when Muslims screech and scream about the Crusades, or Obama apologizes for them as though they were a major and devastating event in the histor ...more
Sep 08, 2015 Samantha rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-in-2016
This was a good short overview history of early Muslim-Christian relations, such as they were. Most of the facts are well-known (and covered separately and in greater detail in other sources.) There is nothing so much "new" here, but The Cross and the Crescent is impressive for being both concise and cogent. Fletcher's overall thesis is that relations between Islam and Christianity (or between the Dar-al-Islam and Christendom) were neither of existential hostility nor of "multiculturalism. " Th ...more
Feb 17, 2016 Adam rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is a really well-written history book. It explores the relationships between the Christian and Islamic worlds during the Middle Ages. It is a masterpiece of conciseness. In its brevity, it covers an immense amount of scholarly material without ceasing to hold the reader's attention.

The worlds of Islam and Christianity looked at each other with mutual incomprehension, but interracted in many ways from hostility in the form of the Crusades to the exchange of knowledge as well as in trade. Th
May 28, 2012 John added it
Shelves: nonfiction
An excellent and very readable introduction to the porous frontiers of these two empire building monotheisms. How the East and West competed, communicated, and misunderstood each other by illustrating trade, intellectual development, and proselytizing wars. Fletcher's concentration was based on how Islam thrived and dominated, while the Westerner's Xianity stooped and slouched, until Italy and Spain came into their own economic and political power/consolidated statehoods.

The last two chapters a
Jan 07, 2012 Tim rated it really liked it
Fletcher offers a good and reasoned examination of Christian-Muslim relations, explaining (among other things) why it has been historically that Christians saw Muslims as violent and Muslims, at least until the modern period, thought little of Christian Western Europe. The vantage may be skewed a little toward the Christian in number of details (not in point of view), maybe because the Muslim world saw so little to take notice of in Western Europe until after the period he surveys (which really ...more
Sep 03, 2011 David rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: history
An easy-to-read essay about the relations between Christians and Muslims, trying to explain the roots of the misunderstandings among these 2 cultures. Despite the strong links and interactions between both worlds, the coexistence has been (and undoubtedly is) difficult. It is clear that it could be a fruitful relation, but it has been poisoned historically by powerful interest.
Although the book concentrate on a remote time, it is interesting to verify that some of the arguments are still valid
Dec 04, 2014 Katrice rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is a short book on a complicated subject but it manages to say a lot and give a great backgrounder on the way that Christianity and Islam grew to be two of the worlds most dominant religions. It just covers up to the Crusades and a little before and beyond, so just the tip of the iceberg I suppose, but it covers it well.
Aug 31, 2011 Benji rated it really liked it
I wouldnt call this book a simplistic look, its just so short that it's easy to see it this way. Similarly, he chooses a very few small goals and accomplishes them, so in that sense the book is a success. Lots of good anecdotes and the chapters are all orderly, though he speeds up in the last 50 pages.
Oct 06, 2010 Joe rated it it was ok
This book was a fairly simple and easy to read historical account of the early relationship between the European Christian and Asian/North African Muslim civilizations, however the author failed to do any real analysis. It seemed to be just another account of the history, and fairly abbreviated, with no real thought into the effects or meaning of the interactions.
David Boyd
Feb 08, 2014 David Boyd rated it it was amazing
This is an awesome little book. It is essentially a snapshot (much more and larger books have been written on the subject) of the history and tension between Islam and Christianity and I think explains a lot without going into serious detail. If you read it with this in mind, it works well. I really enjoyed and certainly felt a lot more knowledgeable on the subject without being an expert.
Jan 09, 2009 Roger rated it liked it
Interesting history of the middle east and attempts to explain some of the reasons behind the continual conflict and hatred that is so prevalent in that part of the world. I learned a great deal that I was not aware of and understand more, even though violence and hatred are never a path to meaningful life.
Jan 11, 2015 Christopher rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is an extremely insightful book, providing some much needed historical context for the conflict between the West and Islam raging today. Despite the density of the information and the serious subject matter, this is a fairly quick read.
Feb 15, 2014 Diane rated it liked it
This book provides and overview of Muslim-Christian relations during the Medieval period. It was well-written, but most of the information in it was not new to me.
roland simarangkir
No comment.
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Jul 12, 2014
Daniel Watts
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Jan 27, 2016
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Dec 27, 2015
Joe Gaeta
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May 16, 2014
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May 29, 2017
Joshua Welbaum
Joshua Welbaum rated it liked it
Nov 23, 2012
Gerrygriyawan rated it it was amazing
Mar 05, 2017
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Jan 02, 2013
Leif Erik
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Sep 05, 2007
William Speers
William Speers rated it liked it
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Wilhelm rated it it was amazing
Jul 23, 2014
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Richard A. Fletcher was a historian who specialized in the medieval period. He was Professor of History at the University of York and one of the outstanding talents in English and Spanish medieval scholarship.

Obituary @ the Times Online
More about Richard Fletcher...

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