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Attitudes toward Jews under Muslim rule

Attitudes toward Jews under Muslim rule

Prof. Meir Litvak

The vast territories that came under Islamic rule over the years, brought with them large numbers of non-Muslim groups and peoples. This diversity demanded a practical policy that would regulate the activities of non-Muslims and would ascribe a clear place to them. Members of monotheistic religions gained the status of Dhimmi, non-Muslims under protection of Muslim law. On the one hand, this status meant that they had to exist under restrictions and limitation, but on the other, it allowed them a certain level of religious and social autonomy. As part of this status, Jews, who were living in various areas throughout Islamic-ruled North Africa, Iberia and the Middle East, were able to exist in relative peace, especially compared to Jews in Christian Europe. However, this relatively peaceful existence depended on their acceptance of their inferior status in society.

How were the monotheistic minorities perceived in the time periods discussed here?

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