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Talking to the Enemy: Saladin and Richard the Lionheart
Feb 25 2013 12:15pm
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The Alwaleed Bin Talal Center for Muslim-Christian Understanding and the Medieval Studies Program

invite you to a briefing:

'Talking to the Enemy: The role and purpose of diplomacy and negotiation between Saladin and Richard the Lionheart during the Third Crusade'


Thomas Asbridge
Director of the Centre for the Study of Islam & the West
Queen Mary, University of London

This paper presentation considers the role and purpose of the diplomatic interactions between Saladin and Richard the Lionheart during the Third Crusade. It argues that, between 1191 and 1192, both leaders variously employed diplomatic contact to garner military and political intelligence, to gain insight into the temperament and mindset of their adversary, and to purposefully wrong-foot the enemy. It suggests that in the course of this crusade Richard I demonstrated a far greater capacity for subtlety and manipulation than has previously been recognized, exhibiting diplomatic skills that equaled, and perhaps even eclipsed, those of his rival Saladin. The use of negotiation to achieve actual conflict resolution is considered and it is argued that neither protagonist pursued peace for its own sake. These findings are contextualized within the wider framework of Latin-Muslim negotiations during the crusading era, and the broader relationship between Islam and the West during the Middle Ages.

Monday, February 25, 2013

12:15pm - ICC 270


Thomas Asbridge is the founding Director of the Centre for the Study of Islam & the West at Queen Mary, University of London. Dr. Asbridge is a medieval historian, specializing in the study of the crusades and the Latin settlement of the Levant between 1095 and 1291. His book The Crusades: The War for the Holy Land was published to international critical acclaim in 2010 and has so far been translated into seven other languages. He has written and broadcast widely on the history of Islam’s relations with the West. In 2012 Thomas Asbridge wrote and presented BBC Two’s landmark three-part series The Crusades. Tracing the history of this 200-year war between Christians and Muslims for control of the Holy Land, Thomas filmed on location across the Middle East, north Africa and Europe, and visited numerous archives – from Jerusalem’s Aqsa Mosque to an isolated island monastery in Venice – to reveal rarely seen manuscripts and artifacts. Thomas Asbridge is the Director of the MA in Islam & the West and chair of the Islam & the West Research Seminar.

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For directions and more information, please visit:
Alwaleed Bin Talal Center for Muslim-Christian Understanding

Edmund A. Walsh School of Foreign ServiceICC 301, Georgetown UniversityWashington D.C. 20057Phone: (202)

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