Visualized Space and Spatial Concepts. Al-Iṣṭakhrī‘s Kitāb al-Masālik wa-al-Mamālik
and its Reception.
In the 10th century, the so-called Balkhī school of geographers around al-Balkhī, al-Iṣṭakhrī, Ibn Ḥawqal, and al-Muqaddasī brought about the first preserved and coherent corpus of geographic material, each consisting of a textual description of the Islamicate World with a world map and 20 regional maps. Al-Iṣṭakhrī’s Kitāb al-Masālik wa-al-Mamālik is the oldest preserved work of this school and I intend to apply an interdisciplinary approach on it for the first time, using perspectives from Geographical Sciences and Art History. The objective of this approach is to acquire a new understanding of his central notions of space, its arrangement and concepts of its visualization in the discourse of (space) knowledge of his time. On the one hand, I will contextualize these elements of his work with geographic and cartographic discourse traditions and on the other hand, I will examine their reception in the school and further beyond. In doing so, I seek to analyze al-Iṣṭakhrī’s impact on the way to write, represent and arrange space.
Erstgutachterin: Prof. Dr. Dr. h.c. Gudrun Krämer
Zweitgutachterin: Prof. Dr. Wendy Shaw