Award-winning professor John Kaltner's new work offers a general introduction and orientation to the Qur'an. It surveys the origin, structure, contents, study, and use of Islam's sacred text. Offering selective rather than comprehensive coverage, the work allows for discussion and analysis of specific themes and issues of interest to modern readers.
Following an introduction that describes and situates how the Qur'an is both studied and experienced, Kaltner's book takes up the following themes by chapter to foster a contemporary understanding and appreciation of the Qur'an: the natural environment, Muslim life, gender and sexuality, non-Muslims and the Other, jihad, war and peace, and life after death. Significant passages from the Qur'an are identified and analyzed, with a special focus on how modern scholars, both Muslim and non-Muslim, understand them. Kaltner intersperses his book with numerous photographs and textboxes to emphasize and highlight important elements of the Qur'an, its history, and its relevance to contemporary life.
John Kaltner is Virginia Ballou McGehee Professor of Muslim-Christian Relations at Rhodes College, Memphis, Tennessee. He is the author of Islam: What Non-Muslims Should Know (2003) and coauthor of What Do Our Neighbors Believe? Question and Answers on Judaism, Christianity and Islam (2007).