"Let books be your dining table, / And you shall be full of delights. / Let them be your
And you shall sleep restful nights" (St. Ephraim the Syrian).

Monday, November 19, 2012

Coptic Civilization

As some parts of the world pay some (but by no means enough) attention to on-going events in Egypt, including the treatment of Coptic Christians, a number of forthcoming books shed light not just on current Coptic realities but on their noble and venerable past. One, set for release in January 2013 is Gawdat Gabra, ed.,Coptic Civilization: Two Thousand Years of Christianity in Egypt (American University of Cairo Press, 2013), 272pp.

About this book the publisher tells us:
A comprehensive cultural history of the Copts and their rich contributions of literature, art and architecture, material arts and music
Egypt’s Copts make up one of the oldest and largest Christian communities in the Middle East. Yet despite the availability of a large number of books on aspects of Coptic culture, including art and architecture, monasticism, theology, and music, there is to date no single volume that provides a comprehensive cultural history of the Copts and their achievements. Coptic Civilization aims to fill this gap, by introducing the general reader, the interested non-specialist, to Coptic culture in all its variety and multi-faceted richness. With contributions by twenty scholars, Coptic Civilization includes chapters on monasticism, the Coptic language, Coptic literature, Christian Arabic literature, the objects and documents of daily life, magic, art and architecture, and textiles, as well as the history of Coptic Church, its liturgy, theology, and music.

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