One Thousand Roads to Mecca: Ten Centuries of Travelers Writing about the Muslim Pilgrimage

Since its inception in the seventh century, the pilgrimage to Mecca, or the Hajj, has been the central theme in a large body of Islamic travel literature. Beginning with the European Renaissance, it has also been the subject for a handful of adventurous writers from the West who, through conversion or connivance, managed to slip inside the walls of a city forbidden to non-Muslims. One Thousand Roads to Mecca collects significant works by observant travel writers from the East and West over the last ten centuries. These two very different literary traditions form distinct sides of a spirited conversation in which Mecca is the common destination and Islam the common subject of inquiry.

Excerpted works include travel narratives by Ibn Jubayr, Ibn Battuta, J.L. Burckhardt, Richard Burton, the Begum of Bhopal, John Keene, Winifred Stegar, Muhammad Asad, Harry St. John Philby, Lady Evelyn Cobbald, Jalal Al-e Ahmad, Malcolm X, and Michael Wolfe.

Some Books by Michael Wolfe

Translation, Poetry
A selection of 125 Greek epitaphs translated into English and introduced by Michael Wolfe, with a Foreword by Richard P. Martin. Johns Hopkins University Press. "A wonderful book!" Kay Ryan. "His translations of the Greek epitaphs are simply stunning." Richard Wilbur. Widely reviewed in Classics journals and in: http://www.poetryfoundation.org/harriet/2013/04/codeunknown-reading-writing/ Arts Fuse: http://artsfuse.org/79947/fuse-poetry-review-lapidary-ends-cut-these-words-into-my-stone/
Travel Writing Anthology: 2016 Expanded Edition
“…an exemplary job of detailing the ceremonies performed at Mecca and the reasons behind them. The (twenty-five) chosen excerpts give the reader a sense of how the hajj has changed over time as well as how constant the central ceremonies have remained. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED.” Library Journal (STARRED review) “A tradition of Muslim writing aimed at the insiders and out.” The Boston Globe. In Quality Paper and E-book formats
Nonfiction Travel Narrative
“It requires a special sensitivity to write well about the Hadj…Michael Wolfe’s tone is exactly right.” The Times Literary Supplement. In Quality Paper and E-book formats

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