Hello there . I have one for all the social historians.
Last night I was having a discusion with someone about racial stereotyping in Disney films and Aladdin came up. In the course of the discussion my buddy mentioned as an aside that he had heard that the Aladdin stories from 1,001 Nights were Chinese in origin. He had no cite and wasn’t definite about it - Just something he had picked up somewhere.
So does anybody know if there is any truth to this?
For that matter, what are the origins of 1,001 Nights? I know it’s a hodgepodge of tales -But are most Persian in origin ( I would assume so )? Indian? How many are Pre-Islamic ( None? A few? Many? Most? )?
When was it more or less definitively collated? For some reason I always associate it with the Abbasid Caliph Harun al-Rashid. Any truth to that, or is it just some brain-fart on my part?
I can think of two famous Ala’ad-Din’s off the top of my head. The son of the Khwarizm Shah, Jalal ad-Din, who was famous as a anti-Mongol resistance leader. And the famously paranoid ( but highly effective ) Sultan of Delhi from the Khalji dynasty. But both of those are relatively late ( and were Turkish ), 12th and 13th century respectively, I think. Can anyone think of any more?
Finally does anyone have a good cite ( book or article ) they can point me towards for scholarly information on this topic?
Thanks in advance .