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February 5, 2007

Brian Catlos receives honor from American Historical Association

By Scott Rappaport

The American Historical Association (AHA) has awarded associate professor of history Brian Catlos the 2006 Premio del Rey--a biennial prize for the best book on Iberian history of the pre-1516 period. This marks the second prize Catlos's book The Victors and the Vanquished: Christians and Muslims of Catalonia and Aragon, 1050-1300 (Cambridge University Press, 2004) has received from the AHA. Last year it was co-winner of the association’s John Edwin Fagg Prize for the best publication on Spanish, Portuguese, or Latin American history in 2005.

Brian Catlos

Brian Catlos

Catlos's book is a study of a Muslim minority living under Christian rule in the age of the Crusades and Spanish “Reconquest.” It calls into question many presuppositions concerning the role of religious identity in medieval society and the idea of civilizational conflict in general (see Currents article). A paperback edition is scheduled to be published this spring, and the prestigious University of Valencia Press has just purchased the rights for a Castilian translation.

Catlos joined the UCSC faculty in 2002 after spending six years in Barcelona, where he was a research fellow at the Spanish National Research Council. He teaches courses on medieval Spain, the Crusades, and world history, and his research focuses on ethno-religious identity--specifically relations among Christians, Muslims, and Jews across the pre-modern Mediterranean. Beginning next year, he will also teach undergraduate and graduate courses on early Islamic history.

Catlos is additionally codirector of UCSC's Mediterranean Studies Research Group and is actively involved in developing the interdisciplinary field of Mediterranean studies. He is currently working on two books: a volume on the history of Muslim societies in the medieval West, and a book on the everyday lives of Muslims and Jews living in 14th-century Christian Spain.

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