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ISLAMIC SPAIN

ANDALUSI SOCIETY

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... Al-Andalus gave birth to a flourishing and unique civilization, reaching a high level of development in the 11th and 12th centuries when [Christianity and Islam] became practically equal in their material development. Not only was the level of material culture the highest in western Europe up to that time, but it was, in general, accessible to most of the population.
 Juan Zozaya, Material Culture in Medieval Spain  
   

For several centuries, Christians, Muslims, and Jews lived together and prospered in southern Spain. During this enlightened period, individuals made lasting contributions to their culturally diverse civilization of multiple faiths.

However, gradually over the next three centuries, larger forces vying for power gave way to puritanical judgments, absolutism and religious extremism. Ultimately, these exclusive policies and the conflict they unleashed extinguished the shared learning that had flourished.

   
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