|Other Titles:||The propagation of Islam and the Formation of the Kutamite State|
|Author's alias:||AMABE, Fukuzo|
|Abstract:||At the end of the ninth century, the Kutamites nestling in numerous villages on the ridges of the Lesser Kabylia mountains, eastern Algeria, were divided into many clans and waged occasional warfares against each other (Their identity as Kutamite kins was very weak). They were under the authority of their patriarchs, who presided over peoples' assemblies, and were charged with carrying out the assemblies' decisions. Each clan (and even each patriarch) was fiercely independent, and continued to resist the increasing encroachments by Arabs from the nearby former Roman cities situated at the foot of the Lesser Kabylia, Mila, Satif, and Bilizma. Nevertheless, they had begun to convert to Islam, at least superficially, as the result of direct and continuing contact with the Arab cities through trade (acculturation). Younger leaders from the Saktan, Masalta, Ijjana, and Ghashman clans, probably in rivalry with older patriarchs, accepted the teaching of Shi'i, a revolutionary missionary sent by the hidden imam's hujja or deputy (al-Mahdi), who resided in Salamiya, Syria. Isma'ill Islam, equipped with interpretation of the hidden meaning (batin) of Qur'an and Neo-Platonic ontology, was yet to come; Shi'i's shari'a (law) was based on the common interpretation prevalent in those days, especially the regional interpretation of Ifriqiya (mostly older Umayyad one). Persecution by opposing tribesmen forced Shi'i and most of his followers to move from Ikjan, a Saktan village, to Tazrut, a Ghashman village overlooking Mila. Ironically, this persecution facilitated the formation of a new, fervently egalitarian community based on the acceptance of Shl'i's charismatic leadership. Eventually, even with military assistance of the Arabs of the nearby cities, the opposing tribesmen, divided among themselves and burdened with the persistent rivalry of their traditional patriarchs, were overcome by the rising community. Following the once anti-Shi'i Malusa and Lahisa, all the opposing Kutamites accepted Shi'i's Islam, albeit unwillingly, in the hope of gaining renown and booty. As a result, the traditional patriarchy gave way to a new community, in which all members were equal to each other, subject to Shi'i's charismatic judgement. At the beginning of the tenth century, after conquering all of the Arab cities nearby, Shi'i launched offensives into the Aghlabid dominion. In every city he offered security to all citizens regardless of their religious affiliation--Muslims, Christians and Jews--in return for the payment of shar'i taxes to Shi'i's government. As this campaign continued, the basis of his rule shifted from his personal charisma to the traditional rule of law, very much like that of the Aghlabid state, which it had supplanted. The facts that the real Mahdi was not a charismatic leader and that Shi'i and his fervent supporters were soon eliminated both helped and completed this transformation. Soon the Kutamites, who had replaced the Aghlabid henchmen and the Arab warriors of the traditional society, monopolized and enjoyed power and wealth in Ifriqiya. In the middle of the tenth century, the Hawwarites of the Awras mountains tried their own version of nation-building and conquest of Ifriqiya under their own religious leader, Abu Yazid Makhlad. It is only after Mahdi's state overcame this challenge that it seriously began to consider to return to the charismatic rule of imams, helped by the famous Isma'ili ideologue, al-Qadi Nu'man.|
|Appears in Collections:||59巻1号|
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