Jelle Bruning, Ph.D. (2014), Leiden University, is Assistant Professor of Middle Eastern Studies at that university.
J. Bruning specializes in the social and intellectual history of early Islamic Egypt. He has worked extensively on documentary sources in Arabic, Coptic, and Greek. He wrote a PhD thesis on the centrality of Fustat during the reigns of the Rightly-Guided and Umayyad caliphs and currently works on a project on Alexandria’s connectedness with other areas in the Mediterranean and Near East in the period 640-968 CE. J. Bruning is also interested in medieval Arabic literature, medical literature in particular. (Université de Leiden)
In The Rise of a Capital: Al-Fusṭāṭ and Its Hinterland, 18/639-132/750, Jelle Bruning maps al-Fusṭāṭ’s development from a garrison town founded by Muslim conquerors near modern Cairo (Egypt) in c. 640 C.E. into a bustling provincial capital a century later. Synthesising contemporary papyri, archaeology and narrative sources, this book argues that al-Fusṭāṭ’s position in Egypt changed with the different policies of the Rightly-Guided and Umayyad caliphs and their provincial representatives. Because these policies affected the town’s centrality in the administration as well as in commercial and legal networks throughout Egypt, from Alexandria in the north to Aswan in the south, The Rise of a Capital offers valuable new insights into Egypt’s society during the first century of Muslim rule.
(Credit photo: Egypte, Le Caire: fouilles d’al-Fustât, habitat omeyyade (milieu du VIIIe s.) en cours de dégagement (Programme LA3M/Institut Français d’Archéologie Orientale sous la direction de R.-P. Gayraud)