Just Wars, Holy Wars, and Jihads explores the development of ideas of morally justified or legitimate war in Western and Islamic civilizations. Historically, these ideas have been grouped under three labels: just war, holy war, and jihad. A large body of literature exists exploring the development of just war and holy war concepts in the West and of jihad in Islam. Yet, to date, no book has investigated in depth the historical interaction between Western notions of just or holy war and Muslim definitions of jihad. This book is a major contribution to the comparative study of the ethics of war and peace in the West and Islam. Its twenty chapters explore two broad questions: 1. What historical evidence exists that Christian and Jewish writers on just war and holy war and Muslim writers on jihad knew of the other tradition? 2. What is the evidence in treatises, chronicles, speeches, ballads, and other historical records, or in practice, that either tradition influenced the other? The book surveys the period from the rise of Islam in the early seventh century to the present day.
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