India's First International News Journal

19.1 C
Saturday, April 1, 2023

Within the season of seminars: a symposium on the history of Andalusia at the Ministry of Culture


Today, the Ministry of Culture held a symposium entitled " History of Andalusia" This is part of the seminar season organized by the Ministry in its second edition, in cooperation with Qatar University, the Arab Center for Research and Policy Studies, and Qatar National Library, from 4 to 19 March.

The symposium was held in the House of Wisdom Hall, at the headquarters of the Ministry of Culture, in the presence of His Excellency Sheikh Abdul Rahman bin Hamad Al Thani, Minister of Culture, and a group of academics and intellectuals.



The critic and novelist Dr. Nizar Shakroun, a cultural advisor at the Ministry of Culture, participated in the symposium, and a number of members of the “Himma” program team, which was recently produced by the Ministry of Culture on Andalusian history. Director of the Qatar Media Center.

During the symposium, Dr. Nizar Chakroun presented a research paper entitled " What necessity today to study Andalusian history? (92 AH – 711 AD / 798 AH – 1492 AD), during which he stressed that returning to Andalusian history constitutes an essential step for understanding the elements of the Arab-Islamic identity, stressing the need to make Andalusian cultural heritage available to Arab generations, and that we need a new discourse on this rich civilization that enables us to stand on Its components and its role in creating a model of progress in a period when the West was mired in its darkness.

He noted that the Spanish intellectuals had noticed their neglect of the"Andalusian civilization" As a component of their identity, they went back to studying it, and among the most famous of these writers was the historian Juan Andres, who settled in Italy to write his encyclopedic book in eight parts on comparative literature and general history, and he concluded in it by saying that all that Europe owes in terms of civilizational development in various literatures Arts, thought and science is the impact of the Andalusian civilization.

He added that Arab researchers have recently noticed the advantages of Andalusian studies after the interest of the Spanish Arabists in this heritage, which remained absent from scientific circulation, while the romantic approach in Arab studies of a civilization that reached the stage of ruins in the collective memory prevailed. Stressing that the conquest of Andalusia in 711 AD was not just a geographical expansion or the spread of the Islamic religion only in the Iberian Peninsula, but rather it was a starting point for the establishment of a civilization.. adding" The Strait of Gibraltar was not just a site over which regional powers struggled to control it. It remained in the memory of Muslim Arabs as a symbol of the step taken by Tariq bin Ziyad in the eighth century AD, to launch "New era" He carried within him the seeds of difference and distinction in the Arab-Islamic civilization".

In his intervention, Shakroun indicated that the Andalusian culture was influenced by the scientific, intellectual and literary production of Arab Muslims in the East, but it was distinguished from it at the same time, as Andalusia, after less than two centuries, became the destination of the people of the East, noting that the Andalusian environment embraced creativity, despite the fluctuations of politics there, it remained Culture existed until the fall of Granada, thanks to the role of the rulers in caring for it, so literature, arts and sciences developed, and endowments from the rulers or from the general public contributed to encouraging students of knowledge, publishing books, and establishing public libraries in major cities such as Cordoba, Seville and Granada, so that libraries constitute an essential factor in the renaissance of Andalusian society in its flourishing periods.

He explained that literary and intellectual expressions in "Andalusian era" It came into contact with all kinds of literature in the East, from the arts of prose such as rhetoric, correspondence, debates, shrines, and the arts of poetry, music and singing. "Andalusian literature" A stage in which oriental models are followed, in order to renew and develop these arts, and for the Andalusian talent to be able to create artistic forms that the East did not know, the most prominent of which was the emergence of muwashshahs in the late ninth century AD, and new thought arose in addition to the renaissance of sciences, which constituted a key factor in the European renaissance.

Dr. Nizar Shakroun, advisor at the Ministry of Culture, stressed during the symposium on the history of Andalusia that the Arabs were able to build a civilization there thanks to their reliance on basic elements to achieve their renaissance, the most important of which was science.

He said that the translation of sciences is one of the most prominent activities that reflected the Andalusians’ keenness to take knowledge from other cultures, and the rational tendency was a basic component of their philosophical thinking, to directly affect the European Enlightenment. Architecture and textile industries, given that man’s adventure in existence is based on combining knowledge and work, which was evident in the book "Bin Yaqzan neighborhood" Ibn Tufail.

He said that the most important achievements of the Andalusian civilization are that it dealt with the Arab cultural heritage that preceded it in a critical manner, which made Western modernity later adopt this concept and overcome thinking in the present over thinking in the past, which is a concept that we should adhere to and think more about our present than thinking. In the past, and to learn from this civilization that still needs to be discovered.

At the end of his speech, Dr. Nizar Chakroun called for the importance of establishing a center concerned with the study of Andalusian civilization to be a new civilized starting point.

The journalist Badr Lami talked about the program / Himma / saying that the program tried to answer in a simple way many questions about the conquest of the Iberian Peninsula, and what are the challenges that Muslims faced at the time of the conquest? To absorb the history of this stage by focusing on the determination of the men who conquered Andalusia, based on the enthusiasm that the Islamic faith placed in the hearts of these conquerors, whose number, according to some accounts, did not exceed 7 thousand Muslims, and they were not only Arabs, but also Berbers, and that the men’s enthusiasm did not subside. Andalusia fell.

He also explained that the program aims to work to change some old concepts, such as the issue of Islamic conquests, which do not stop, but rather continue in many fields, especially science and scientific research. Every achievement in scientific research that Arabs contribute to is considered a conquest, pointing out that the success in organizing the World Cup In Qatar 2022, it was one of the most important contemporary successes.

The two Qatari journalists, Saud Al-Kuwari and Mohammed Al-Shahrani, talked about their role in preparing and participating in the “Himma” program, stressing that the efforts of the work team, sponsored by the Ministry of Culture, came together to present a scientific material accompanied by filming from the same events sites to bring information closer to the viewers, appreciating the trust and care given by the Ministry to the work team.

The team members also talked about the difficulties they faced during their trip to Spain and presenting the program that links history with contemporary culture.

The symposium witnessed many interventions that enriched the discussion, the most prominent of which was the intervention of the poet Dr. Hassan Al-Nama, Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the Sheikh Hamad Award for Translation and International Understanding, who appreciated the efforts of the Ministry of Culture in promoting societal culture, pointing out that Qatar’s interest in the history of Andalusia is not recent, but rather an inspiration for a legacy dating back to the history of The former ruler of Qatar, Sheikh Ali bin Abdullah Al Thani, who was the first to direct the interests of the Arab region and the Gulf to the study of Andalusia out of his admiration for its heritage, and that was at a time when information was scarce. .

It is worth noting that the seminar season includes 5 seminars, and is considered a live platform and a spacious space to highlight the national culture and enrich it by interacting with international cultures, in addition to its primary role in promoting dialogue between intellectuals and generations of intellectuals on pivotal issues of interest to large sectors of society. The activities of the seminar season will conclude next Sunday. Organizing a symposium on the impact of Islamic civilization on the West.

Copyright © 2023 The Eastern Herald.

Arab Desk
Arab Desk
The Eastern Herald’s Arab Desk validates the stories published under this byline. That includes editorials, news stories, letters to the editor, and multimedia features on


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here




Read More