New Books in Middle Eastern Studies: An interview with James E. Lindsay and Suleiman Mourad, "Muslim Sources of the Crusader Period"

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In the West, the study of the phenomenon known as the Crusades has long been dominated by European concerns: European periodization, European selection of important moments and personages, and, most of all, European sources. In recent years, scholars such as Carole Hillenbrand, Paul Cobb, and Michael Lower have mined Arabic-language material with the purpose of creating a more balanced view of the Crusades--one that gives the Muslim experiences a voice in the English language. Now, Dr. Suleiman Mourad, Professor of Religion at Smith College, and Dr. James Lindsay, Professor of History at Colorado State University, have produced an anthology known as Muslim Sources of the Crusader Period: An Anthology (Hackett, 2021). Covering a wide range of topics and a diverse set of sources, Muslim Sources of the Crusader Period makes new translations of primary source material available to English-speaking students and scholars of the Crusades.

In our conversation, Jim, Suleiman and [Aaron M. Hagler, Troy University] touch upon how the Crusades are perceived differently in Muslim sources than they are in European sources; how to categorize an anthology, and what sort of sources to include; and the importance of establishing the diversity of opinion even within the Muslim sources.