Rebecca Ruth Gould deposited “From Pious Journeys to the Critique of Sovereignty: Khaqani Shirvani’s Persianate Poetics of Pilgrimage,” Remapping Travel Narratives in the Early Modern World (Amsterdam UP, 2018) in the group Medieval Studies on Humanities Commons 4 weeks ago
While the trope of the Islamic pilgrimage (ḥajj) is well known, the impact of the imagery and concept of travel on poetic production from the Islamic world, particularly in Persian, has not merited the same scrutiny. This chapter introduces one of the most important and yet least-studied Persian travel narratives to an interdisciplinary readership: the Gift from the Two Iraqs (Tuhfat al-ʿIraqayn), composed in the middle of the twelfth century by the Persian poet Khāqānī Shirvānī. I examine this work’s contribution to world literature and global poetics by documenting its deployment of key tropes from a longer tradition of thinking about mobility within Persian and Islamic poetics. Of particular interest is Khāqānī’s transformation the riḥla, a discourse known for celebrating migration as a pious act, into a means of critiquing sovereign power.