Bożena Prochwicz-Studnicka: The Origins of the Great Significance of Writing in the Arab-Muslim Culture


This article considers the underlying reasons for the great importance of writing in the Arab-Muslim culture. In the first part, on the basis of sources belonging to the classical religious tradition of Islam, the origin of writing and its primordial functions are explained. The analysis of the source corpus showed that the high status of writing should be linked with its divine character (writing as the domain of God who, by the use of writing, creates the entire existence, records human deeds, and embodies His Word). In the second part, this classical discourse is interpreted from the perspective of 1), the cultural process of the adoption of writing; 2), possible cultural diffusion; and 3), the Koranic concept of the relation of God to humans.

[Arabic writing, Arab-Muslim culture, word anthropology, heavenly books, Koran]