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Jerusalem: The Contested City by F.E. Peters

Jerusalem: The Contested City

by F.E. Peters

Title Details

Audio Original
Running Time
8 Hrs.


Located in the heart of Israel, Jerusalem is the center for the spiritual world’s three largest religions. Throughout its millennia-old history, Jerusalem has been known by many names: Salem, Zion, Hierosolymae, Al-Quds and others, and no city has ever been in more dispute. In scripture, the city’s history began nearly four thousand years ago when Abraham met Melchizedek, King of Salem. Its significance as a “holy land” is evident by the number of religions that call it their spiritual home. Jews, Christians and Muslims have struggled for its possession. In the twenty-six times a new group took over leadership of the city, the “City of Peace” has seen very little of its namesake even through modern times, and thirty-five times it was at least partially destroyed. In light of the volatile nature of the Middle East, and today’s ongoing conflicts, it is important that we understand why Jews, Christians and Muslims all lay claim to Jerusalem. Through an in-depth study of the various holy sites in Jerusalem, you’ll begin to see which are considered sacred and to whom. And through an investigation of Mark Twain’s The Innocents Abroad you will see the many different perspectives of pilgrims in days of long ago, and even today.

F.E. Peters is the award-winning author of The Monotheists: Jews, Christians, and Muslims in Conflict and Competition and Jerusalem and Mecca: The Typology of the Holy City in the Near East. He has two degrees in Classical Languages as well as a Ph.L. in Philosophy from St. Louis University and a Ph.D. in Islamic Studies from Princeton. He teaches in the Department of Middle Eastern Studies at New York University.

Lecture 1 Holy Places, Holy City

Lecture 2 The City of the Great King

Lecture 3 The Fall and Restoration of Jerusalem

Lecture 4 Jews and Greeks in Jerusalem

Lecture 5 The Jerusalem of Jesus

Lecture 6 The Great Wars (66-135 C.E.)

Lecture 7 The "Mother of All the Churches" (325-635 C.E.)

Lecture 8 The Distant Shrine: The Muslims Come to Jerusalem (638-750 C.E.)

Lecture 9 The Crusades

Lecture 10 Jerusalem Liberated

Lecture 11 Piety and Polemic: The Age of Pilgrimage

Lecture 12 Travelers, Tourists and Pilgrims

Lecture 13 Through New Eyes: Jerusalem and the Moderns

Lecture 14 From Then to Now: The Holy Places in the Present Age

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