The Urban Environment and Medieval Social Strategies
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The Urban Environment and Medieval Social Strategies
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Irina Variash 
Affiliation: Lomonosov Moscow State University
Address: Russian Federation, Moscow

The article discusses the issue of the so-called segregation norms against Muslims that emerged in the fourteenth century in Christian Law. The author analyzes source material relating to the history of the Crown of Aragon and raises the following question: is it possible to trace any connection between the urban environment and those social strategies that were applied to the infidels in the Middle Ages? Such research optics makes it possible to distinguish several types of segregation laws, some of which were a product of the urban environment and urban culture, which is substantiated by the author on the basis of the royal ordonnances, capitulae of the Valencian Cortes, Fuero of Valencia. The author discusses new legal norms that contradicted the early privileges for Muslims (12th — 13th centuries) and regulated Muslims’ appearance (a distinctive sign on clothes, a special hairstyle), their right to live together or next to Christians, their work on Sundays and Christian holidays, and also prohibited the public call to prayer. Paradoxically, these norms, being aimed at restricting the rights of the infidels (i.e. the Others), were formulated under the influence of the urban environment, in a settlement that was heterogeneous in its genesis and diverse in its nature. The Iberian-Latin civilization, which accumulated the human capital of the Muslim civilization in the course of the Reconquista, began to change its own social strategies in the management of Muslims in the fourteenth century. The experience of the cities was crucial in this process.

medieval city, human capital, Muslim, Christians, segregation, Crown of Aragon, 14th century, Latin social strategies
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