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History of Islamic Science: Articles

Selected Articles

1. Ahmad, Imad-ad-Dean. “The Rise and Fall of Islamic Science: The Calendar as a Case Study.” In Proceedings of Faith and Reason: Convergence and Complementarity. Al-Akhawayn University, Ifrane, Morocco: Minaret of Freedom Institute, 2002.

Abstract: This article is based on a lecture given by Dr. Ahmad at a conference on Religion and Science at the Al-Ahawayn University in Ifrane, Morocco and is available in print form. In this article Imad-ad-Dean discusses possible explanations for the quick rise of Islamic Science and reasons for its fall.

2. Alavi, Karima. Tapestry of Travel. Center for Contemporary Arab Studies, Georgetown University, 2006.

Abstract: This article discusses the contributions of Arab/Muslim civilization to geography and world exploration.  It is a teaching module describing the Arab and Muslim civilization's rich historical achievements in the sciences and humanities, advances that furthered geographical discoveries, and the exchange of scholarship with Europe.

3. Burke, Edmund. "Islam at the Center: Technological Complexes and the Roots of Modernity." Journal of World History 20.2 (2009). Print.

Abstract: This article focuses on three case studies—the water management toolkit, the writing and information management toolkit, and the mathematics and cosmology toolkit—in an effort to explore the reasons for the apparent centrality of Islamic societies in the assembling of these technological complexes.

4. Falagas, Matthew E., Effie A. Zarkadoulia, and George Samonis. "Arab Science in the Golden Age and Today." The Journal of Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology 20 (2006): 1581-586.

Abstract: This research provides a brief but holistic overview of Arab science between 750–1258 CE and today.  The author discusses aspects which led to the Golden Age, also providing an overview of Islamic Medicine, Education, Hospitals, and Science, during the Golden Age, as well as science in the Arab world today.

5. Gari, Lutfallah. "Ecology in Muslim Heritage: Treaties on Environmental Pollution up to the End of the 13th Cen." Muslim Heritage. FSTC Limited, 30 Apr. 2008. 

Abstract: This article discusses the topic of environmental ecology and summarizes its contents, acknowledging several Arabic treatises dating from the 9th through the 13th century dealing with environmental pollution. The article covers subjects like air and water contamination, solid waste mishandling, and environmental assessments of certain localities.

6. Konstantinos, Alexakos, and Antoine Wladina. "The Golden Age of Islam and Science Teaching." Science Teacher 72.3 (2005): 36-39.

Abstract: The authors of this article are high school science teachers who firmly believe that teaching students the history of science itself is essential to developing a deeper understanding of the foundations of modern science.  For this reason the article gives attention to the immense contributions of Arab-Islamic scientists and scholars, highlighting the many Arabic-Islamic scientific contributions to modern science and the need to study the achievements of other cultures in general.

7. Masoud, Mohammad T., and Faiza Masoud. "How Islam Changed Medicine: Ibn Al-Haytham and Optics." British Medical Journal 332.120 (2006).

Abstract: This article focuses on Ibn al-Haytham. He was a distinguished mathematician, astronomer, and philosopher of his time, and he became known in Europe as the author of a monumental book on optics, Kitab al-Manazir (The Optics3). He explained that “sight perceives the light and colour existing on the surface of the contemplated object...Vision perceives necessarily all the objects through supposed straight lines that spread themselves between the object and the central point of the sight.

8. Salih, H., and M. Al-Amri. The Miracle of Light. Ed. M. El-Gomati. The Foundation for Science and Technology and Civilization. 2005. A World of Science 3. UNESCO.

Abstract: In celebration of the International Year of Physics, this piece was presented as a tribute to Ibn Hatham(Iraq, 965-1040).  Among a number of major contributions, Ibn Haitham put experimental science on the map by decisively settling the heated debate over the basics of vision through a remarkable series of experiments.

9. SYED, Ibrahim B. "Islamic Medicine: 1000 Years Ahead of Its times." Journal of the International Society for the History of Islamic Medicine 1.2 (2002).

Abstract: In his article Ibrahim covers the development of medicine in the Islamic empire in a holistic manner.  He sheds light on the licensing of physicians, hospitals and treatment plans, verifying that Islamic medical practice was ahead of its time.

10. TSCHANZ, David W. "A Short History of Islamic Pharmacy." Journal of the International Society for the History of Islamic Medicine 1.3 (2003).

Abstract: David Tschanz provides a brief historical overview that focuses on the work of early Islamic scholars involved in the development of pharmaceutical knowledge.

11. Urquhart, John. "How Islam Changed Medicine: Ibn Sina (Avicenna) Saw Medicine and Surgery as One." British Medical Journal 332.120 (2006).

Abstract: This article discusses Ibn Sina’s book Al-Qanun fi al-Tibb (the Canons of Medicine), recognized as the authority of medicine for 500 years, and Ibn Sina’s unique integrated view of surgery and medicine.

 12. Valley, Paul. "How Muslim Inventors Changed the World." The Independent 11 Mar. 2006.

Abstract: This short piece provides a list of 20 of the most significant Arab innovators, and what it is they introduced to the world.



Sarah Samaha, Library Volunteer (2011)


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