Zoom Seminar | Squaring always the circle: Medieval Arabic Diagrams, their representations and implications
From: 2020-07-02 To:2020-07-02
Medieval & Early Modern Philosophy
Reason, Politics & Society
Squaring always the circle: Medieval Arabic Diagrams, their representations and implications
Michel Kabalan (IF-FLUP)
FDTW: Zoom-Seminar: https://videoconf-colibri.zoom.us/j/93193782042
Meeting ID: 931 9378 2042
Abstract: It is well known that Arabic medieval manuscripts are abound with several types of diagrammatic representations and complexities. Be it in the natural sciences, astronomy, algebra and last but not least philosophy, Arabic medieval manuscripts often include and for the purpose of clarity shorthand annotated diagrams and/or marginal diagrams inserted by the manuscripts' copyists themselves at some point during the transmission process. In addition, these diagrams frequently cover one to two pages when a larger complex representation or diagram is needed. Rarely considered except for their aesthetic value, these diagrammatic representations often chronicle the signs and the traces of the passage from a mere textual conceptualisation to a more complex yet condensed graphic conceptualisation. In this paper, I shall study several examples of these unique diagrammatic representations. I will mostly highlight two to three diagrams drawn respectively from a political, theological and scientific Arabic Medieval treaty. Towards the end, I will try to show how these complex diagrammatic representations are echoing a gradually shifting visual dynamic, from the textual to the representational, within the history of Arabic and Islamic philosophy.
- Even-Ezra, A., «Visualizing Narrative Structure in the Medieval University: "divisio textus" Revisited» Traditio (72), 341-376 (2017).
- Johnson, J. C. & Stavru, A. (eds.), Visualizing the invisible with the human body: Physiognomy and ekphrasis in the ancient world, Berlin, De Gruyter (Science, Technology,and Medicine in Ancient Cultures 10) (2019).
Instituto de Filosofia da Universidade do Porto - FIL/00502
Project From Data to Wisdom. Philosophizing Data Visualizations in the Middle Ages and Early Modernity (13th-17th Century) - FDTW (POCI-01-0145-FEDER-029717)