Recent Scholarship: Kuran on Zakāt

This week’s issue of SSRN’s Islamic Law & Law of the Muslim World eJournal includes an article by Timur Kuran, Professor of Economics, Political Science, and Islamic Studies at Duke University, on the failure of early Islamic governments to use zakāt to advance personal liberties: "Zakat: Islam’s Missed Opportunity to Limit Predatory Taxation" Abstract One … Continue reading Recent Scholarship: Kuran on Zakāt

Recent Scholarship: Fadel on Islamic Financial Ethics

Mohammad Fadel, Professor of Law at the University of Toronto, wrote a chapter in Islam and Applied Ethics (Hamad bin Khalifa University Press, 2017) exploring the ethical principles that inform Islamic law in connection with finance: “Ethics and Finance: An Islamic Perspective in the Light of the Purposes of Islamic Sharia” The chapter was originally … Continue reading Recent Scholarship: Fadel on Islamic Financial Ethics

In the News: Ḥalāl Food

A few weeks ago, Germany's Interior Ministry apologized after serving pork at a conference on Islam in Berlin. Most of the attendees at the conference were apparently Muslim, and under Islamic law, pork is not considered permissible (ḥalāl) to eat. Like other aspects of Islamic law, there are some differences among Islamic legal scholars (and … Continue reading In the News: Ḥalāl Food

Islamic Law & Law of the Muslim World eJournal: Nov 30th

SSRN's logo featuring the letters "S" "S" "R" "N" in capital letters

This week’s issue of the Islamic Law & Law of the Muslim World eJournal includes: "Security Design, Incentives, and Islamic Microfinance: Cross Country Evidence" by Yaoyao Fan, Kose John, Hong Liu, and Luqyan Tamanni This study finds that Sharia-compliant microfinance institutions have less credit risk than conventional ones, have better poverty outreach, are less likely … Continue reading Islamic Law & Law of the Muslim World eJournal: Nov 30th

In the News: Islamic Banks and FinTech

Last month, a representative of the Malaysian Industry-Government Group for High Technology—a public-private taskforce overseen by the prime minister to examine ways of using new technology to promote business opportunities—suggested that Islamic banks could reduce legal and administrative costs by using "blockchain." Blockchain is a type of electronic ledger, and according to the representative, blockchain … Continue reading In the News: Islamic Banks and FinTech

SHARIAsource Lunch Talk :: The Social Impact of Legal Patchworking (Talfīq)

Aaron Spevack, SHARIAsource Visiting Fellow 2018-2019, spoke on his current research into legal patchworking (talfīq). He examined debates for and against this legal tool, its role in the creation of sharīʿa-compliant financial instruments within Islamic law, the potential individual harms it can inflict, along with the potential social good. The event was livetweeted and may … Continue reading SHARIAsource Lunch Talk :: The Social Impact of Legal Patchworking (Talfīq)

Recent Scholarship: Emon on Islamic Finance

SHARIAsource Senior Scholar Anver Emon is co-editor of The Oxford Handbook of Islamic Law, and recently contributed an essay on the historical and policy debates concerning Islamic finance. Excerpt: Islamic finance is a field of economic activity that has, since the 1980s, informed a global industry that is variously valued in the billions, if not … Continue reading Recent Scholarship: Emon on Islamic Finance

Contemporary Primary Sources: Open Letter to ISIS from Muslim Scholars

In 2004, 126 Islamic scholars from around the world published an open letter “to the fighters and followers of the self-declared ‘Islamic State,'” rejecting the religious justification for their violence. In particular, they sought to demonstrate how ISIS’ leaders were “cherry-picking” verses from the Qurʾān and how they were ignoring Islamic legal and ethical standards. … Continue reading Contemporary Primary Sources: Open Letter to ISIS from Muslim Scholars

East Cameron Gas Sukuk: The Dawn of a New Frontier

This report assesses the East Cameron Partners' attempts to operate a large oil and gas company using Islamic finance principles. The report hails the venture as the "first Sukuk offering backed by US oil and gas assets," and discusses ṣukūk as a viable means to gain an "alternative source of funding" in energy-rich areas. Source: … Continue reading East Cameron Gas Sukuk: The Dawn of a New Frontier

Contemporary Primary Sources: Indonesian Council of Ulama Fatwā on Friday Prayers for Travelers Aboard Ships and Aircraft

This fatwā considers that, as a result of traveling internationally, people may miss Friday (i.e., depart on a Thursday and arrive on a Saturday). Pursuant to the Ḥanbalī school of thought, however, all persons aboard ships and aircraft are to perform Friday congregational prayers. These prayers are only to be performed on Friday: If, as … Continue reading Contemporary Primary Sources: Indonesian Council of Ulama Fatwā on Friday Prayers for Travelers Aboard Ships and Aircraft