Ibn Khaldun's Science of Human Culture
Ibn Khaldun's Science of Human Culture

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Ibn Khaldun's Science of Human Culture

Heinrich Simon

Fuad Baali (Translation)




This is an English translation of Heinrich Simon's Wissenchaft von der Menschlichen Culture (Leipzig, 1959).


The title of the book is self-explanatory and, as Simon puts it, "it is indeed Ibn Khaldun's merit to have made human society the subject of a new, separate science."


The German scholar's chief purpose in writing the book is to establish the connection of the Ibn Khaldun's work with the philosophical tradition. He shows that Ibn Khaldun's Science of Human Culture is something essentially new (at the time) and that Ibn Khaldun was the first to attempt the formulation of social laws. Apart from the connections with philosophical tradition and with the situation of Ibn Khaldun, the book also considers whether such a view is compatible with the basic religious attitudes toward history and whether Ibn Khaldun's view of history is Islamic.




1. Introduction

2. The Historical Situation

3. The Life of Ibn Khaldun

4. The Work of Ibn Khaldun

5. Ibn Khaldun’s Position in the Philosophical Tradition

6. The Meaning of the Term ‘Asabiyyah

7. History as a Cycle 

8. The Economic Factors in Human Society

9. Function and Significance of the State

10. Ibn Khaldun’s Relation to Religion

11. Conclusion