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8 - The age of trans-regional reorientations: cultural crystallization and transformation in the tenth to thirteenth centuries

from Part II - Eurasian commonalities

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  05 May 2015

Benjamin Z. Kedar
Hebrew University of Jerusalem
Merry E. Wiesner-Hanks
University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee
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This chapter examines transmutations and renovations of complexes of religious-cultural, societal, and political practices that occurred between the tenth and the thirteenth centuries in several civilizations. The Axial Age is a period of cultural crystallization, as is the emergence of the modern world in all its varieties and entanglements. The chapter outlines some elements of a comparative civilizational analysis that focuses on common patterns of development across civilizations of the Old World. It explains that in the early second half of the Middle Millennium profound redefinitions of macro-societal practices occurred in several parts of the Old World. Due to these transformations occurred in a number of different world regions, the chapter refers this period as an age of trans-regional reorientations. Transformations taking place in this period can be interpreted as different responses to sets of problems that become acute with near simultaneity in several civilizations of the Old World.
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Print publication year: 2015

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