Medieval Iberian Crusade Fiction and the Mediterranean World
Published: August 2019© 2019
296 Pages, 6.00 x 9.10 x 1.10 in
Reading crusader fiction against the backdrop of Mediterranean history, this book explains how Iberian authors reimagined the idea of crusade through the lens of Iberian geopolitics and social history. The crusades transformed Mediterranean history and inaugurated complex engagements between Western Europe, the Balkans, North Africa, and the Middle East in ways that endure to this day. Narratives of crusades powerfully shaped European thinking about the East and continue to influence the representation of interactions between Christian and Muslim states in the region.
The crusade, a French idea that gave rise to Iberian, North African, and Levantine campaigns, was very much a Mediterranean phenomenon. French and English authors wrote itineraries in the Holy Land, chronicles of the crusades, and fanciful accounts of Christian knights who championed the Latin Church in the East. This study aims to explore the ways in which Iberian authors imagined their role in the culture of crusade, both as participants and interpreters of narrative traditions of the crusading world from north of the Pyrenees.
Note on Translation and Transliteration
Introduction: Medieval Iberian Crusade Culture and the Mediterranean World
1. Ziyad ibn ‘Amir al-Kinani: Andalusi Muslim Crusade Fiction
2. A Knight Errant in the Iberian Crusade Imaginary: Libro del Caballero Zifar
3. Iberian Missionary Crusade in Ramon Llull’s Blaquerna
4. Romancing Iberian Crusade: Crónica de Flores y Blancaflor
5. Fiction and History in Tirant lo Blanch (Valencia, 1490)
"David Wacks describes admirably how the complex connections and imagination of distant geography brought literary figures, tropes, and ideals into surprising contact, allowing us to see the worlds of these five literary works in new ways. Each of the chapters presents a readable and compelling view of the fictional work set in a broad social and narrative history of the crusades and crusade ideologies that drove both fictional production and real political decisions."Adam Franklin-Lyons, Marlboro College, Studies in Medieval and Renaissance Teaching
"David A. Wacks’s engaging and innovative book situates medieval Iberian crusade fiction in a broad Mediterranean framework, an approach that is sure to encourage further critical debate."Jean Dangler, Department of Spanish and Portuguese, Tulane University