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Mystical Encounters: Locating Sufis and Sufism in the Biographical Writings of Ibn al-Khaṭīb

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Ibn al-Khaṭīb’s engagement with Sufism has received less attention among scholars than other aspects of his political and literary career. The existing research has focused primarily on the debate concerning the sincerity of his commitment to Sufism. This article proposes to locate Ibn al-Khaṭīb’s attitude toward Sufism and the Sufis of fourteenth-century Nasrid Granada by analyzing some of the notices he dedicated to Sufis in his biographical dictionary, al-Iḥāṭa fī akhbār Gharnāṭa. By studying a broad range of biographies, this article hopes to shed light on Ibn al-Khaṭīb’s views regarding the compatibility of Sufism with public service and to increase our knowledge about the activities of the Sufis of Nasrid Granada by illustrating the various roles they played in Nasrid society.

Affiliations: 1: Faculty of Humanities, Universitat Pompeu


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