Study Questions for F. E. Peters
Muhammad and the Origins of Islam
I. Founding Fathers
2. Colonial Era in Arabia
- What was the relationship between Abraham and Arabia, particularly
Mecca, according to Muslim tradition?
- Who were the "Founding Fathers?" Founding what? Fathers of whom?
3. The Arabic Oikoumene [know what "Oikoumene" refers to]
- How important were the Christian and Jewish communities in Arabia
- What role did Abyssinia play in Arab history in the period before
4. The Family and City of Muhammad
- Compare Persian to early Roman interests in Arabia
- Be able to compare Patricia Crone's views of Mecca with those
provided by Peters in this chapter and the next
5. The Gods and the Shrine
- How did the Meccans organize use of the Ka'ba before Muhammad
6. A Prophet at Mecca
- What was "The Era of Ignorance" and how did Muslims explain it?
7. The Migration to Medina
- How did Muhammad become a 'prophet?' And what did that mean
in 7th century c.e. Mecca?
8. The City of the Prophet?
- Why did Muhammad move to Medina? What was the move's significance
for the Muslim community?
9-11. Last three chapters
- What did Muhammad do in Yathrib/Medina? How do we know?
For the future Islamic world, why are Muhammad's activities in Medina important?
- How did Muhammad conquer Mecca
- What was the Islamic community at Muhammad's death? - size, shape,