Mariam Sheibani is a Research Fellow at Harvard Law School’s Program in Islamic Law and Lecturer at Harvard Divinity School. She received her PhD in Islamic Thought from the Department of Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations at the University of Chicago. Her research interests are in Islamic intellectual and social history, with a focus on law, ethics, gender, and contemporary Islamic thought. She serves as Lead Blog Editor for the Islamic Law Blog (formerly ShariaSource) based at Harvard Law School and Research Editor for the Journal in Islamic Law.

Her first book project, Islamic Legal Philosophy: Ibn ʿAbd al-Salām and the Ethical Turn in Medieval Islamic Law, examines how Muslim jurists from the eleventh to fourteenth centuries addressed salient questions of legal philosophy and ethics, leading them to develop competing legal methodologies and visions of the law. In particular, she traces the development of a purposive, analytical, and socially responsive legal discourse that originated among Shāfiʿī jurists in Khorasan and continued to evolve in Ayyubid Damascus and Mamluk Cairo in subsequent centuries. The study centers on a prominent Damascene heir of Khorasani Shāfiʿism, ʿIzz al-Dīn b. ʿAbd al-Salām, a pivotal figure in the development of Islamic legal philosophy, ethics, and legal maxims (qawāʿid fiqhiyya). Learn more about her book project and other current research projects. 

In 2019-2020, Mariam is teaching two graduate seminars at Harvard: Islamic Ethics: Between Reason, Revelation, and Reform (Fall 2019) and The Thought and Legacy of al-Ghazālī (Spring 2020). Prior to her doctoral studies, she earned a BA in Public Affairs and Policy Management, an MA in Legal Studies, and a second an MA in Islamic Thought. She has conducted research in Turkey, Jordan, Egypt, Morocco, Spain, the UK, and West Africa.