Reference : Christian-Muslim Encounters: George of Trebizond and the ‘Inversion’ of Eastern Disco...
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Christian-Muslim Encounters: George of Trebizond and the ‘Inversion’ of Eastern Discourse towards Islam in the 15th Century
Papastathis, Konstantinos mailto [University of Luxembourg > Faculty of Language and Literature, Humanities, Arts and Education (FLSHASE) > Identités, Politiques, Sociétés, Espaces (IPSE) >]
Christianity and Religious Plurality
Methuen, Charlotte
Spicer, Andrew
Wolffs, John
Ecclesiastical History Society in association with the Boydell Press
Studies in Church History, Vol. 51
[en] Political Theology ; Islam ; Eastern Orthodoxy
[en] This paper critically assesses the political paradigm shift of Byzantine theological thought towards Islam after the fall of Constantinople. Within this historical juncture, I focus on the re-articulation of the intellectual discourse of George of Trebizond towards a more conciliatory stance in opposition to the polemical hegemonic narrative of the Eastern Christian past. My aim is twofold: a) to indicate the premises of his discourse regarding Islam in comparison to the dominant prejudice against it; and b) to examine contextually his diverse perspective in approaching the Muslim ‘other’, his distinct religious considerations and political programme, as well as the theoretical formula proposed for the co-existence of the two communities. Furthermore, I explore whether his political swing and his contribution to the de-construction of the negative stereotypical images of Islam acquired social consensus and influenced in the long run the political behaviour of the Christian ‘imagined community’ within the ottoman commonwealth. The method of elaborating the material is the so-called Essex School paradigm, according to which discourse is analyzed as a network of meaning, articulating both linguistic and non-linguistic elements/signifiers that function as the nodal points of the discursive structure. Last but not least, I consider whether his relevant works might be a possible basis for Orthodox theology to transcend religious bias and establish a spirit of mutual understanding with Islam.
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