Book: Divine Covenant
Chapter: The Qurʾānic Canon
In Chapter 3 I present selected research into the Qurʾānic Arabic language, the canonization process, ‘readings’, and Qurʾānic composition, including a critical assessment of Nöldeke’s chronological theory-discourse and some of its current applications. I then proceed to compare this research with one of the earliest theoretical paradigms developed to explain the same topics, that of the jurist and exegete Muḥammad b. Jarīr al-Ṭabarī (d. 310/923). Al-Ṭabarī’s concepts of Qurʾānic Arabic language and of divine ‘Covenant’ as a compositional structure then forms the base for a model of the Qurʾān’s canonical composition and its theoretical foundation, which I develop here. The model, which focuses on the terms of the divine Covenant, then serves as the ‘meta-topic’, with reference to which I analyse the other selected Qurʾānic concepts at meso- and micro-levels.