Studying Islamic Law in the Mamlūk Barracks

By Christian Mauder This is part two in a series of four posts on legal culture at the late Mamlūk court. As former slave soldiers (mamlūks) of non-Muslim origin, many members of the military elite of the Mamlūk Sultanate did not acquire a natural familiarity with Islamic legal norms in their childhood and youth. Many … Continue reading Studying Islamic Law in the Mamlūk Barracks

Weekend Scholarship Roundup

SCHOLARSHIP ROUNDUP On Islamic Law: In "Petitioning the Sultan: Protests and Justice in Late Ottoman Sultan" (Bloomsbury 2021), Yuval Ben-Bassat (University of Haifa) discusses the institution of petitioning the Ottoman sultan, specifically Abdulhamid II, as a legal remedy in Ottoman Palestine. Abhishek Gupta (Indian Law Institute) discusses Indian Muslims' demand for interest-free Islamic banking in … Continue reading Weekend Scholarship Roundup

What does Equality Mean in the Colonies?

By Nurfadzilah Yahaya Two phenomena struck me as particularly incongruous while researching for my book Fluid Jurisdictions: Colonial Law and Arabs in Southeast and plagued me throughout the process of writing it. The first was “illegal occupations” (‘onwettige occupaties’) which referred to land occupied by populations who were not allowed to own the land according … Continue reading What does Equality Mean in the Colonies?

Islamic Law, (Bio)ethics, and Ethical Gatekeeping of Science

By Ayman Shabana One of the important reasons why the use of the term “Islamic law” as the English counterpart for sharīʿa is problematic has to do with the conceptualization of the relationship between law and ethics in Islam. In the modern period, the term “law” is often understood as positive, secular, or man-made law, … Continue reading Islamic Law, (Bio)ethics, and Ethical Gatekeeping of Science

Weekend Scholarship Roundup

In "On Sacred Land" (Minnesota Law Review, vol. 105 (2021)), Khaled A. Beydoun (Wayne State University Law School) discusses America's "Anti-Sharia Movement" within the context of the Religious Land Use and Institutionalized Person's Act, highlighting the resistance local governments exhibit against the creation of mosques and other Islamic community centers across the country. In "Women … Continue reading Weekend Scholarship Roundup

Islamic Law in the News Roundup

As talks between the Afghan government and the Taliban continue, the US peace envoy to Afghanistan, Zalmay Khalizad's proposal circulated to both parties includes "a High Council for Islamic Jurisprudence," to advise ordinary courts as to matters involving the interpretation of Islamic law. Austrian Muslims have planned to sue the Austrian government under the leadership … Continue reading Islamic Law in the News Roundup

Commentarial Ocean

By Mahmood Kooria The postclassical commentarial literature of Islamic law, once ignored for being repetitive and inauthentic, now has been receiving considerable scholarly attention. Through the processes of canonization, codification, regionalization, synthesis and transregional connections; forms such as core texts, commentaries, supercommentaries, autocommentaries, glosses, translations and summaries; and contents such as substantive laws, contextual selections … Continue reading Commentarial Ocean

Islamic Law in the News Roundup

This Ramadan, because the duration of the fast varies from city to city based on dawn-to-dust time,  the Russian city of Murmansk has the longest fasting time - a total of 18 hours. Standard Bank announced that it launched its first shar'īa discretionary trust offering. Legal experts from the UAE recently stated that a person … Continue reading Islamic Law in the News Roundup

Late Ottoman Beiruti Waqfs: Closeness to God (Qurba) and Charity for the Family

By Nada Moumtaz In my book, God’s Property: Islam, Charity, and the Modern State, I seek to explain the contours of the contemporary waqf revival in Beirut against a longue durée of waqf reform since the mid-nineteenth century, starting with the Ottoman foundation of a Waqf Ministry in 1826 through French Mandatory (1920-1943) and postcolonial … Continue reading Late Ottoman Beiruti Waqfs: Closeness to God (Qurba) and Charity for the Family

Calling All Waqf Haters

By Nada Moumtaz Waqf (Islamic endowment), and its study, cannot leave a scholar of Islam unmoved, it would seem. For those not working on waqf, its complex legal technicalities instigate dread and “boredom of the heart.” Its accounting documents and the economic history they tell evoke the dryness of “counting beans,” as a colleague once … Continue reading Calling All Waqf Haters