Author: Carr, Matthew
Extent: 288 pp
Publication: February 2017
Publisher: Hurst & Company Ltd.
In April 1609, King Philip III of Spain signed an edict denouncing the Muslim inhabitants of Spain as heretics, traitors, and apostates. Later that year, the entire Muslim population of Spain was given three days to leave Spanish territory, on threat of death. In a brutal and traumatic exodus, entire families and communities were obliged to abandon homes and villages where they had lived for generations. By 1614 Spain had successfully implemented what was then the largest act of ethnic cleansing in European history, and Muslim Spain had effectively ceased to exist.
Blood and Faith is celebrated journalist Matthew Carr’s riveting chronicle of this virtually unknown episode, set against the vivid historical backdrop of the history of Muslim Spain. Here is a remarkable window onto a little-known period in modern Europe—a rich and complex tale of competing faiths and beliefs, of cultural oppression and resistance against overwhelming odds.
Well-balanced and comprehensive … Blood and Faith is a splendid work of synthesis. … it is impossible to read this book without sensing its resonance in our own time. New York Times
Balanced and thoroughly researched history. Literary Review
In this first comprehensive appreciation in many decades of the Muslim expulsion from Spain, Blood and Faith meticulously recaptures the fateful self-mutilation of a society that might have become Europe’s first multicultural nation and offers a grim lesson about religious and racial repression in our contemporary age of contested faiths. Professor David Levering Lewis, author of God’s Crucible: Islam and the Making of Europe, 570-1215
A fascinating account of perhaps the first major episode of European ethnic cleansing and, just as importantly, the story of the beginning of the conviction that “blood” matters more than belief; a conviction that led, in the end, to modern racism. In an age when so may people, on both “sides”, believe we face an historic confrontation between Christendom and Islam, it is essential to place the relations between these two global Abrahamic religions in a wider historical framework. This book does that eloquently and judiciously. Professor Kwame Anthony Appiah, Princeton University