Religious Transformations in the Early Modern World A Brief History with Documents

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  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 2009-01-09
  • Publisher: Bedford/St. Martin's

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The early modern period witnessed sometimes startling, sometimes subtle transformations in the religious and intellectual life of peoples across the globe. For reasons that varied widely, leaders and thinkers from Mexico to the Ottoman Empire and from China to the Indian subcontinent sought to reform existing religions, develop new spiritual practices, promote innovative texts, and, on occasion, even create new religions. Presenting documents from different regions and different religious and philosophical traditions, including Islam, Judaism, Sikhism, Christianity, and Confucianism, this volume allows students to explore and analyze these varied transformations. A general introduction introduces the framework for examining the chapter case studies, while the chapters provide context, a group of primary sources, and a set of questions to consider. Useful pedagogic supports include headnotes to the documents, a chronology, a set of broader questions to consider that help students compare transformations, a selected bibliography, and an index.

Author Biography

Merry Wiesner-Hanks (Ph.D., University of Wisconsin-Madison) is a Distinguished Professor in the Department of History at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. She is the co-editor of the Sixteenth Century Journal and the author or editor of twenty books and many articles that have appeared in English, German, Italian, Spanish, and Chinese. These include Early Modern Europe 1450-1789 (2006); Women and Gender in Early Modern Europe (3rd ed. 2008), and Gender in History (2001). Her research has been supported by grants from the Fulbright and Guggenheim Foundations, among others. She currently serves as the Chief Reader for Advanced Placement World History, and has also written a number of source books for use in the college classroom, including Discovering the Global Past (3rd ed. 2006), and a book for young adults, An Age of Voyages, 1350-1600 (2005).

Table of Contents

A Note about the Texts
Religious Innovations and Reforms
Interwoven Transformations
Primary Themes
The Documents Mesoamerica: Mexica Innovations and Mexican Catholicism
Gods of Life and Death from theCodex Borgia,c. 1500
Hymn to Huitzilopochtli from the Codices Matritenses, c. 1550
Mexica War Songs, 1560s
Diego Durá
The History of the Indies of New Spain, c. 1580
Sermons, 1540
Christian Psalmody,1583
Final Judgment,1530s
Annals,1613 Europe: Reforms and Reformations in Christianity
Desiderius Erasmus,The Praise of Folly,1511
The Freedom of a Christian, 1520
A sermon on marriage, 1525
Protestant woodcut,1546
Spiritual Exercises,1520s
The Way of Perfection,1565
Injunctum nobis, 1564
Institutes of the Christian Religion, 1536
Ordinances for the Regulation of Churches, 1547
Africa and Southwest Asia: Politics and Mysticism in Islam and Judaism
The Replies of Muhammad Al-Maghili to the Questions of Askia al-Hajj Muhammad, 1498
Letters Between Sultan Selim I and Shah Isma’il, 1514
Mystical dance of a Sufi brotherhood, sixteenth century
Qualities of a Sufi saint, c. 1560
The Balance of Truth,1656
The Palmtree of Deborah, 1560s
Bringing Forth Sparks,1570
The Pious Customs of Abraham Galante, 1580s
South Asia: Syncretism and Sikhism in the Mughal Empire
Abu’l Fazl, Akbarnama, c. 1590
‘Abd ul-Qadir Bada’uni,Selected Histories,c. 1590
Scholars Gather at Akbar’s Court, 1605
School of Religion,c. 1650
The Japji Sahib from the Guru Granth
Hymns of Guru Amar Das, 1560s
Sikh texts for a wedding, 1560s
East Asia: Combining and Competing Traditions in China and Japan
Questions on theGreat Learning,1527
The Community Compact for Southern Ganzhou, 1520s
A Book to Burn (Fenshu),1590
Two Letters, 1590s
A Man in a House Beneath a Cliff,17th century
Ruling and Living in Conformity with the Order of Heaven andEarth
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