Despite the wealth of documentary evidence regarding the development of Andalusian civilization in the Iberian Peninsula following the first Muslim invasions in a.d. 711, considerable controversy surrounds the issue of how to interpret the political, cultural, and demographic impact of Islamization on what is now Spain and Portugal. That Islamic civilization had a profound impact on the culture and language of Iberia cannot be questioned. Much debate, however, centers around the issue of the demographic impact of immigrating North African Berber and Arab settlers into Al-Andalus. Was the rise of Andalusian civilization primarily a process of conquest, immigration, and demographic and cultural replacement, or did conversion and the adoption and assimilation of Islamic culture and language by indigenous Hispano-Romans play an important role as well?
The University of Chicago Press
Andalusian, Iberia, Berber, Islamization
Current Anthropology, Vol. 40, No. 5 (December 1999), pp. 719-726