Reading workshop: Abd al-Raḥmān al-Dahil: The Émigré Prince
From September 23, 2021 until October 27, 20216:00 p.m.
4 euros for the general public at the headquarters.
3 euros: tickets purchased online, the officially unemployed, Casa Árabe
Language Center students and Youth Card holders. You must complete
payment at least one week prior to each reading session. Sales on our
website (in the information provided on each session), or at Casa
Árabe’s headquarters in Cordoba (in cash or by credit card). The number
of participants is limited to a maximum of 25.
After our summer break, on Thursday, September 23, we will be resuming
this series of workshops which have allowed us to take a more in-depth
look at Al-Andalus. At this fourth session, we will get the chance to
comment on Daniel Valdivieso’s most recent book.
This thrilling novel dares to tell the story of the first Umayyad emir of Al-Andalus, one of the most exciting cultures in the Arab and Western worlds, based on painstaking historical documentation, to vividly recreate the odyssey that would lead to the birth of the most powerful kingdom in the West.
Summary: The demise of the great caliph Hisham and his controversial decision to bequeath power to his reprobate nephew al-Walid seem to have opened up a deep wound within the Umayyad dynasty, which has ruled the fated of Islam’s vast empire for a century. With the caliphate in crisis, the Banu al-Abbas—an ancient rival lineage descended from an uncle of the Prophet—are facing the actual possibility of seizing the throne, and so they spread the flame of rebellion from the eastern regions, with the support of groups who oppose the Umayyads.
Unaware of the imminent war, Abd al-Rahman ibn Mu’awiya—grandson of the late caliph—enjoys a life of luxury with his brothers in the Palace of Rusafa, but soon everything he knows and loves will be threatened, and he must embark on a harrowing, aimless flight through a world full of dangers, with no other help than the freeman Badr.
Meanwhile, as Al-Andalus grows increasingly oblivious to the government in Damascus, Syrian forces which come to quash the Berber revolt take control and turn the rich territory into a stage of battle as part of their ancient tribal disputes, threatening the fragile détente between Arabs, Baladis, Berbers and natives.
Daniel Valdivieso (Cordoba, 1983) has a degree in Psychology and is professionally dedicated to historical documentation and publishing, collaborating with the Utopia Books and Almuzara publishing firms. His main work consists of studying medieval sources from Al-Andalus—above all from the Umayyad period—, which has led him to become a consultant for Sexto Mario Patrimonio y Educación, a heritage interpretation entity that holds many official activities for the Madinat al-Zahra Archaeological Ensemble and is a regular contributor at Casa Árabe. Out of his interest in increasing awareness on these topics came his first book, La Córdoba de Ibn Hazm (Ibn Hazm’s Cordoba, Utopía Libros, 2016), a bestseller described by critics as “The finest historical recreation of this ancient capital of the caliphs to have been written so far in the twenty-first century.” He is now debuting this prose work with a tale as thrilling as that of the first Umayyad emir of Al-Andalus.
The information session will be held on September 23, and the reading workshop on October 27, in both cases at 6:00 p.m. in an online format.