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PH 467 - Preceptorial: Life of Muhammad


This is a guide to selected sources of information related to the Life of Muhammad Preceptorial course. Due to the depth of our collection on this topic as well as the variety of topics and subject areas you are able to pursue in this course, the guide is only meant to be a starting point for your research. Depending on your topic you may need to consult other Geisel Library subject guides. For further research assistance, please contact the Philosophy Liaison Librarian.


Reserve Readings List

PH 467 - Preceptorial:  The Life of Muhammad


Research Basics

The reference librarians have created a group of Web pages named Research Help to help teach you the basics of library research and to introduce you to Geisel Library. On the Research Help pages, you will find a guide on Research Basics and a helpful guide on evaluating Web resources titled, our guide on Evaluating Websites. Please take advantage of these resources.


Reference Sources for Background Information

Electronic Reference Materials

Use the following electronic reference materials instead of wikipedia; these resources are full of quality information and are easy to use.

The following resources are restricted to the Saint Anselm College community.

Routledge Encyclopedia of Philosophy

Gale Virtual Reference Library (GVRL)

Oxford Reference Online (ORO)

Encyclopaedia Britannica Online

Print Reference Materials

Reference books are shelved by Library of Congress call number in the reference stacks near the reference desk. They may not be checked out, but photocopiers are available on the lower level of the Library.


Atlas of the Islamic World Since 1500
     Ref DS35.6 .R6

Historical Atlas of the Religions of the World
     Ref BL80.2 .F28

Primary Sources

The Koran
     Ready Ref BP109 .D39

History and Background

The Cambridge History of Islam
     Ref DS35.6 .C3

The Concise Encyclopedia of Islam
     Ref BP40.G42

The Contemporary Islamic Revival: A Critical Survey and Bibliography
     Ref BP60.H32

The Encyclopedia of Religion
     Ref BL31 .E46

The Muslim Almanac: A Reference Work on the History, Faith, Culture, and Peoples of Islam
     Ref BP40 .M83

The New Encyclopedia of Islam
     Ref BP40 .G42

The Oxford Encyclopedia of the Modern Islamic World
     Ref DS35.53 .O95


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Search Tips

To search the library catalogs and databases listed below you will need to use Boolean operators (ANDs and ORs), truncation, and quotation marks to pull up articles on your topic. Here is a brief overview of how to use Boolean operators and truncation:

  • AND  - use AND to link together search topics
  • OR  - use OR to link together synonyms or like concepts
  • *  - use truncation to pull up the root of a word with variant endings
    (Enter in islam* to pull up islam or islamic)

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Find Books/Secondary Sources

Subject Headings Suggestions for the online Catalog:

Muhammad, Prophet, d. 632
Muslims - Saudi Arabia - Biography
Works on the life of Muhammad

Works on the religion of which Muhammad is the prophet.

Islamic Countries
Works on the group of countries in which the majority of the people are Muslims or in which Islam is the established religion.

Works on the community of believers in Islam.

Civilization, Islamic
Works on the medieval civilization of the Middle East, North Africa and Arab Spain collectively.

Civilization, Arab
Works on the civilization of the Arab countries for all periods.

Philosophy, Islamic
Works on Islamic philosophy for all periods.

Works on the Koran, including translations and commentaries.

Includes texts and commentaries of Hadith, traditions relating to the words and deeds of Muhammad.

Islamic Law
Works on Islamic law, including sources, philosophy, and social aspects.

Muslim Women
Works on Muslim women, including social and historical aspects, and biography.

Slavery and Islam
Works on the history of slavery and Islam.

Try also:  Headings beginning with "Islamic" or "Muslim"

Keywords to consider when using the online Catalog:

Consider combining keywords using the connector "and"

  • Prayer
  • Worship
  • Social justice
  • War
  • Imperialism
  • Night Journey
  • Race
  • Jerusalem
  • Women
  • Family
  • Marriage
  • Ummah
  • Politics
  • Government

Also remember that certain words that have been transliterated from Arabic may have variant English spellings - a keyword search will pick these up. Variant spellings of:

  • Muhammad - Mohammed - Mahomet
  • Koran - Quran - Qur'an

If you searched the Geisel Library Catalog but could not locate information on your topic try searching WorldCat, a database that allows you to search the collections of libraries throughout the United States. If you find a book that you want you can request it through InterLibrary loan (ILL) by clicking on the ILL icon in the book's catalog record.


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Finding Journal Articles

The following databases are recommended for performing research on Islam, Muhammad and philosophy. Some databases will let you search the full text of articles while others only let you search through the abstracts of articles, meaning that you will need to use WebBridge to locate the full text or to place an InterLibrary Loan request. To learn how to use WebBridge, please watch our video tutorial (3.5 mins; includes audio).

Academic Search Premier

ATLA Religion Database

Contemporary Women's Issues - abstract only

Historical Abstracts - abstract only

International Medieval Bibliography - on campus use only - abstract only

ITER (Medieval & Renaissance Studies) - abstract only
Searching Guide


Philosopher's Index - abstract only

Project MUSE

Religious and Theological Abstracts - abstract only

Worldwide Political Science Abstracts - abstract only


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Selected Websites
Ahlul Bayt Digital Islamic Library Project

Glossary of Islamic Terms and Concepts
Universtiy of Southern California

The Internet Islamic History Sourcebook
Fordham University

Islam and Islamic Studies Resources
University of Georgia

Islamic Philosophy Online
Muslim Philosophy

University of North Carolina

The Koran
University of Michigan

Middle East Virtual Library
Martin Luther Universität Halle-Wittenberg

Islamic Philosophy Podcast
Philosophy Talk


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Citing Sources

See the library's Citing Sources guide for resources on how to properly cite research materials. Always confirm the style required by your instructor.


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