Carl Heinrich Becker
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Carl Heinrich Becker (April 12, 1876 – February 10, 1933) was a German orientalist and politician in Prussia. 1921 and 1925–1930 he served as Minister for Culture in Prussia (independent). He is one of the founders of the study of the contemporary Middle East and an important reformer of the system of higher education in the Weimarer Republik.
Early Life and Study
Becker was born in Amsterdam. The son of a banker, Becker attended universities at Lausanne, Heidelberg, and Berlin, and travelled abroad in Spain, the Sudan, Greece, and Turkey before earning his doctorate in 1899.
In 1902, Becker became a privatdozent for semitic philology at the University of Heidelberg, where he came in contact with Max Weber. After the completion of his habilitation in 1908, he was appointed Professor of History and Culture of the Orient at the newly founded Kolonialinstitut and Director of the Seminar for History and Culture of the Orient in Hamburg. In 1910 he founded Der Islam, a journal for the history and culture of the Middle East, and became his editor. In 1913 he accepted an offer from Bonn University, where he became a Professor of Oriental Philology.
Becker and his colleague Martin Hartmann were the first who introduced modern sociological thinking into Islamic studies. He was an opponent of the Kulturkreistheorie (theory of cultural circles) of Ernst Troeltsch.
During the First World War, Becker began his work with the Prussian Ministry of Culture. 1921 and 1925–1930 he served as Minister for Culture in Prussia (independent). He died in Berlin.
- Ibn Gauzi's Manaqib Omar Ibn' Abdelaziz (Dissertation, 1899)
- Beitrage zur Geschichte Agyptens unter dem Islam (2 vols., 1902- 1903)
- Papyri Schott-Reinhardt: Veroffentlichungen aus der Heidelberger Papyrus‐ Sammlung, Vol. 1 ( 1906)
- Der Kanzel im Kultus des alten Islam (1906)
- Christentum und Islam (1907)
- L'Islam et la Colonisation de l'Afrique (1910)
- Gedanken zur Hochschulreform (1919)
- Kulturpolitische Aufgaben des Reichs (1919)
- Kant und die Bildungskrise der Gegenwart (1924)
- Islamstudien: Vom Werden und Wesen der islamischen Welt (2 vols., 1924- 1932)
- Vom Wesen der deutschen Universitaet (1925)
- Die preussische Kunstpolitik und der Fall Schilling (1925)
- Die Paedagogische Akademie im Aufbau unseres nationalen Bildungswesens (1926)
- Zu Beethovens 100. Todestag (1927)
- Works by Carl Heinrich Becker at Project Gutenberg
- Christianity and Islam at Project Gutenberg (trans. Rev. H. J. Chaytor)