A Question of Faith

“Richard Fletcher’s fine, concise history of early Muslim-Christian relations…. calmly and effectively disposes of the popular myth that Islam is an inherently violent and intolerant faith, while at the same time showing that Christians could not be expected to see it in any other way. He shows clearly that far from forcing their subjects to accept their religion at sword-point, Muslim rulers did not initially encourage conversion. There seems to have been much “good-mannered discussion” between Christians and Muslims in the Middle East, where, after centuries of Byzantine oppression, many of the churches flourished as never before.|But in other parts of Christendom, Islam was experienced as a military threat.” Karen Armstrong reviews The Cross and the Crescent by Richard Fletcher –A Question of FaithGuardian)