A Note from the Director
Congratulations to the Class of 2022, as well as to the returning Classes of 2020 and 2021! We at the Program in Islamic Law at Harvard Law School extend a warm congratulations on your extraordinary accomplishments during your time at Harvard. These past few years have been in no way easy ones– from going remote in 2020, to completing an entire year of online learning, to navigating our return to campus amid the ongoing pandemic. But you were able to make the most out of these times through your efforts of collective care and engagement. We commend you to reflect on these experiences alongside the knowledge and skills you’ve gained at Harvard to continue your efforts of collective care as you commence on a new path, with the hopes of making a just, positive difference in the world.
We also congratulate the winners of the paper and doctoral dissertation prizes in Islamic studies. Congratulations to Shayan Karbassi (JD ‘22), the recipient of the Dean’s Program in Islamic Law Writing Prize for his paper “Pursuit of Supranational Authority: Constitutionalism and the Islamic Republic of Iran,” written under the supervision of Professor Vicki C. Jackson. We award this prize annually to the Harvard Law School student who has written the best paper in the field of Islamic legal studies or at the intersection of Islamic law and related fields during that current academic year. We also extend our congratulations to the winner and honorable mention of the Alwaleed Bin Talal Doctoral Dissertation Prize in Islamic Studies, Dr. Janan Delgado (Religion) and Dr. Ari Schriber (NELC), respectively. Dr. Delgado received the prize for her dissertation, “The Ties That Bind: Child Custody in Andalusian Malikism, 3rd/9th – 6th/12th c.” in which she conducts a longitudinal study of the evolution of child custody rules in the Maliki school of law and offers insights into the social history of parent-child relations, especially mother-child relations, and networks of children’s custodians in pre-modern Islamic societies, a topic that has been the subject of minimal scholarly attention. Dr. Schriber received an honorable mention for his dissertation, “The End of Shari’a? The Structural and Epistemological Evolution of the Shari’a Judge in Colonial-Era Morocco,” which addresses the long-standing question of the place of Islamic law in the 20th century nation state, specifically the process of producing sharia-based court rulings in colonial-era Morocco (1912-1956). Congratulations to you all for producing exceptional work on Islamic law during these pandemic-laden times.
As we approach Class Day and Commencement, we urge you all to continue your efforts of collective care and adhere to the additional COVID-19 guidance released by the University for this week’s graduation activities, due to the rise in the COVID-19 positivity rate in Massachusetts. Please refer to our COVID-19 Updates page to review the latest guidance, including the relocation of testing bins on campus.
We look forward to celebrating the graduates of the Class of 2022, as well as to reuniting with and celebrating the Classes of 2020 and 2021, this week!
Intisar Rabb, Professor of Law, Professor of History, PIL Program Director, Harvard