From the two-time Pulitzer Prize–winning author, God’s Crucible brings to life “a furiously complex age” (New York Times Book Review).
Resonating as profoundly today as when it was first published to widespread critical acclaim a decade ago, God’s Crucible is a bold portrait of Islamic Spain and the birth of modern Europe from one of our greatest historians. David Levering Lewis’s narrative, filled with accounts of some of the most epic battles in world history, reveals how cosmopolitan, Muslim al-Andalus flourished―a beacon of cooperation and tolerance―while proto-Europe floundered in opposition to Islam, making virtues out of hereditary aristocracy, religious intolerance, perpetual war, and slavery. This masterful history begins with the fall of the Persian and Roman empires, followed by the rise of the prophet Muhammad and five centuries of engagement between the Muslim imperium and an emerging Europe. Essential and urgent, God’s Crucible underscores the importance of these early, world-altering events whose influence remains as current as today’s headlines. 8 pages of illustrations; 4 maps