Adapted from the original Arabic text by Hooda al-Shawwa’ al-Qaddumi, this abridged version of the famous fable: Epistle 22 of the Rasa’il Ihkwan al-Safa’ (Epistles of the Brethren of Purity) was first published in Iraq in the 10th century CE. The story is illustrated by vibrant and colourful paintings by the artist Hasan Mousa.

The narrative features the animal kingdom arguing a case against their ill-treatment at the hands of humans, with various representatives bringing complaints from both sides. The debate is overseen by the King of the Jinn, who, with his advisers, is left to decide whether the humans’ perceived superiority is justified and on what grounds. During the course of the tale, many ecological and more widely ethical themes are considered in a very engaging way.

As part of the new, accessible publications that are being produced at the Department of Academic Research and Publications (DARP), this volume complements the academic series that is published by Oxford University Press in association with the IIS, under the title Epistles of the Brethren of Purity. The production of this illustrated children’s book in 2010 corresponds with the publication in 2009 of the OUP-IIS bilingual edition, The Case of the Animals versus Man before the King of the Jinn: An Arabic critical edition and annotated English translation of Epistle 22.