North Africa and the Mediterranean Paradox
This introductory chapter provides the background for the story of interaction between Berbers, Arabs, Latins, Muslims, Christians, and Jews in North Africa and Latin Europe and across the Western Mediterranean. The book locates a high tide of the Second Axial Age in the twelfth century, mid-point between the first Muslim conquests to, roughly, the first half of the fifteenth century in the Western Mediterranean. The twelfth century was a period when both Latin Christian Europe and Arabo-Berber Almohad North Africa were fairly evenly matched, and when the Commercial Revolution and Renaissance of the Twelfth Century were at their height in both Europe and North Africa. The book ends with the fourteenth century seen through the eyes of Ibn Khaldun, before the fall of Granada and the discovery of a new West.
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