dunnettreader + medieval + islamic_civilization   2

Şevket Pamuka1 and Maya Shatzmiller - Plagues, Wages, and Economic Change in the Islamic Middle East, 700–1500 | The Journal of Economic History - Cambridge Journals Online
This study establishes long-term trends in the purchasing power of the wages of unskilled workers and develops estimates for GDP per capita for medieval Egypt and Iraq. Wages were heavily influenced by two long-lasting demographic shocks, the Justinian Plague and the Black Death and the slow population recovery that followed. As a result, they remained above the subsistence minimum for most of the medieval era. We also argue that the environment of high wages that emerged after the Justinian Plague contributed to the Golden Age of Islam by creating demand for higher income goods.
article  paywall  economic_history  economic_culture  demography  Islamic_civilization  medieval_history  Medieval  plague  Labor_markets  consumers  wages  EF-add 
march 2014 by dunnettreader
Birgit Svensson: Can Baghdad Reclaim Its Title As Intellectual Capital Of The Middle East? | DIE WELT/Worldcrunch June 2013
As an Arabic saying goes, Middle Eastern books are “written in Cairo, printed in Beirut, and read in Baghdad.” At no time was this truer than in the days of the Abbasids, who reached their political and cultural highpoint in the 8th and 9th centuries while Europe was in the dark Middle Ages.

Traces of all this aren’t so easy to find anymore. The war and terror destroyed most of what remained. But now one of the old centers is being revived: the Bayt al-Hikma, or House of Wisdom, founded by Al Ma’mun (786-833), the son of Harun al-Rashid from One Thousand and One Nights. His intention was to create a gathering place for the intellectual elite — and the goal is the same today.
Medieval  Islamic_civilization  elites  intellectual_history  intelligentsia  Iraq  cultural_history  publishing  MENA 
july 2013 by dunnettreader

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