This study of the Qur'an arises from an interest in a pressing
contemporary issue, the relationship between Muslims and
non-Muslims ('the Ummah and the Other'). This text explores how the
Qur'an comments on this relationship as it changed in the course of
Muhammad's ministry. Particular attention is paid to the portrayal
in the Meccan 'punishment-narratives' of a fascinating and complex
triangular relationship between God, the powerless and persecuted
believing community with Muhammad at its centre, and the
unbelieving Meccans who rejected Muhammad's preaching.
The text raising questions about the possible contemporary
relevance of this analysis, focusing firstly on discussions about
the appropriate models for Islamic society today, and secondly on
dialogue between Christians and Muslims. This book presents a
detailed and illuminating analysis of many important Qur'anic
themes and passages, and offers a coherent and original account of
significant developments within the thought of the Qur'an as a
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