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Saturday, January 17, 2015

influence of direct greek culture into arab

I've been checked out from this article for a while. The Western bias in the lead persists. I'm placing the "globalize" template on the article for now. My original concerns still stand. It should also be pointed out that Greek was the official language of Persia and other regions of Asia for a long time after the demise of the Macedonian Empire. In reality when we talk about the legacy of Ancient Greece we cannot even just talk about the Mediterranean.
Anyway, we can hope there is room for some consensus this time around.
--Mcorazao (talk) 18:19, 15 September 2010 (UTC)
Since the consensus when this was last discussed was that the article is not euro-centric, I will remove the template. If you wish to rehash this in the hopes that old users have drifted away and that new ones have come in, you might wish to briefly restate your points rather than asking readers to wade through that discussion. My objection was that you were making truth claims, rather than pointing to reliable sources that could verify substantial support for the position such that it was not original research. That objection still stands. RJC TalkContribs 21:09, 15 September 2010 (UTC)
RJC, there was not a previous consensus. That was why there was no change (in fact, shortly before that discussion the lead had become a little more West-centric than it was last year). I had previously offered some references which you dismissed without discussion.
I didn't want to get into a cat fight then and I don't now. If there is some willingness to have a real discussion then that would be great. That was not the case previously. I had hoped in the interim to have seen a change happen and it didn't. So the objection stands for now. --Mcorazao (talk) 22:07, 15 September 2010 (UTC)
P.S. For convenience, here's a cut-and-paste of the references I previously dotted off.
  • "Paths from ancient Greece " by Carol G. Thomas - The chapter Hellenism in Islam talks a great deal about the fact that much of early Islamic culture and philosophy was essentially adaptations of Ancient Greek philosophy and culture.
  • "Islamic science and the making of the European Renaissance " by George Saliba - The book starts by critiquing the notion that the Muslims simply translated a few Greek works and did little more. It discusses the direct influences of Greek thinking in Islamic philosophy and then how these later help generate the Western Renaissance.
  • "Greek thought, Arabic culture" by Dimitri Gutas - The chapter The Background of the Translation Movement talks about how Greek-speakers and Greek scholars were part of the near East, some having been there before the Roman period and some coming there during the Roman period to escape religious persecution. That is, it talks about the fact that the Arabic translation movement was in large part translation of culture and literature that was already a part of the culture in these lands.
  • "Theology and modern physics" by Peter Edward Hodgson - The Introduction itself has some good commentary on how science developed passing the Greek legacy from Greece to the Muslims and then to Western Europe.
This was just a quick sampling, of course. --Mcorazao (talk) 22:07, 15 September 2010 (UTC)
The question last year was not whether the Greeks exhibited some influence upon some aspects of non-Western societies, but whether that influence was on a par with that exercised over Western societies. No literate person can deny that Greek philosophy had a profound impact upon medieval Islamic philosophy. Yet sources attesting to this do not establish the larger point that Greek philosophy played a central role in the medieval Islamic world, let alone the even greater point that it continues to do so to this day. You could even say that the Western world was decisively influenced by the medieval Islamic world and that the primary influence of the Greeks upon the West came through Islam, but this is again not the same as saying that Greek thought influenced non-Western thought in the same way that it has Western thought. RJC TalkContribs 23:52, 15 September 2010 (UTC)
I'm not sure how I am supposed to respond. First of all, are you suggesting that the Islamic world was affected enough by Greek thought to have passed it on to the West and then just forgot that influence? Second are you suggesting that the West carefully picked up Greek influence from the Muslims but mostly avoided other influences to such a degree that we can say our culture uniquely inherited from the Greeks more than it inherited from anything else the Muslim nations gave us? That's pretty far-fetched.
The point is that if you are going to make such far-reaching claims they really have to be backed up by references that demonstrate a scholarly consensus around this idea (said consensus does not exist, though). I am simply suggesting that we not attempt to make such claims and simply acknowledge that the Greeks influenced a very large part of the world. There is nothing controversial about that. The difference between our part of the world and some of the others is that, as a society, the West takes a great deal of pride in its influence from the Greeks whereas many other parts of the world have downplayed this influence for sociopolitical reasons (a lot having to do with the politics of the Renaissance and the modern era). --Mcorazao (talk) 13:47, 16 September 2010 (UTC)
I am not going to argue the truth with you (although, yes, al-Ghazali is credited with having exposed the incompatibility between Greek and Islamic thought, which put a damper on Greek influence). If other parts of the world have downplayed the influence the Greeks had on their civilization, I presume this means that there are fewer modern sources attesting to that influence. Finding a source that the Greeks influenced the West in profound and even foundational ways is a fool's errand. In any case, you are not suggesting that we remove the statement that they influenced the West, but rather that we add a statement that they influenced others. By your own argument, such a source will be difficult to come by. As I said above, your sources do not add up to that statement. The consensus was against this template. Unless someone speaks up on its behalf, I will presume that it remains against that template. RJC TalkContribs 14:00, 16 September 2010 (UTC)
As I say, I'm not going to get into a cat fight. I've offered evidence which you refuse to discuss.
But please stop vandalizing. You are free to disagree with me but that is not a license to violate policy. --Mcorazao (talk) 15:21, 16 September 2010 (UTC)
For the record, if anyone else out there would actually like to have a discussion about this please feel free to comment. --Mcorazao (talk) 13:49, 17 September 2010 (UTC)
For the record, flagrant misuse of vandalism templates in an editing dispute [1] is tendentious at best. No one else shares your concerns, while several editors are on record from the last time you pushed this nonsense against there being a need for a change to the lede. RJC TalkContribs 17:25, 17 September 2010 (UTC)

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