State v. Waseem et al. – Waiver of Qiṣāṣ and Taz‘īr in Honor Killing

By Zainab Hashmi This post is part of the Digital Islamic Law Lab (DILL) series, in which a Harvard student analyzes a primary source of Islamic law, previously workshopped in the DIL Lab. Case Summary In September 2019, a Multan Sessions Court (state trial court) issued its decision in State v. Muhammad Waseem et al., a high-profile … Continue reading State v. Waseem et al. – Waiver of Qiṣāṣ and Taz‘īr in Honor Killing

Scholarship in “Plain English”: Joseph Lowry on the First Islamic Legal Theory

By Cem Tecimer Abstract: Joseph Lowry argues that, much like other legal systems, Islamic legal systems, since their formative periods, grappled with the question of how to reconcile competing jurisprudential arguments and a commitment to orderly jurisprudence. Lowry situates Ibn al-Muqaffa‘’s works in this context, arguing that he was among the earlier jurists with a … Continue reading Scholarship in “Plain English”: Joseph Lowry on the First Islamic Legal Theory

Apostasy and Blasphemy in Islamic Law

By Jiou Park This post will provide a survey of pre-modern Islamic law regarding apostasy (ridda), blasphemy, and the related concept of unbelief (kufr). The exploration of such concepts will serve as background for a forthcoming discussion on the application of blasphemy and apostasy laws in contemporary Muslim-majority countries. In classical Islam, apostasy (ridda, or … Continue reading Apostasy and Blasphemy in Islamic Law

A Patchwork Pakistani: Gang Rape, Jurisdiction, and the Mukhtar Mai Case

By Nimra Azmi In 1999, Pakistan passed an amendment to the 1997 Anti-Terrorism Act.[1] This Amendment listed gang rape, child molestation, and robbery coupled with rape as terrorist acts under the ATA. When the 1999 Amendment was passed, rape (zinā' bi'l jabr), which included the ATA sexual offenses, was governed by the Zina Ordinance, a … Continue reading A Patchwork Pakistani: Gang Rape, Jurisdiction, and the Mukhtar Mai Case

The Protection of Women Act vs. the Hudood Ordinance: A Federal Shariat Court Challenge

By Nimra Azmi Pakistan’s 2006 Protection of Women Act (PWA) should have been a victory for progressive Pakistani forces, a definitive end to the 1979 Hudood Ordinances’ draconian reign over rape in Pakistan.[1] The actual landscape, however, is not so clear-cut. While not commonly discussed in the narrative of Pakistani rape law, a 2010 Federal … Continue reading The Protection of Women Act vs. the Hudood Ordinance: A Federal Shariat Court Challenge

Rape & the Hudood Ordinance: A Lost Opportunity

By Nimra Azmi From 1979 until 2006, the Zina Ordinance, a subsection of the Hudood Ordinances, governed rape under Pakistani law.[1] The Hudood Ordinances were implemented during the rule of President Zia ul-Haq, who presided over the country from 1977-1988 as a military dictator. Representing a conservative Islamic orthodoxy of a ḤanafÄ« bent, Zia ul-Haq … Continue reading Rape & the Hudood Ordinance: A Lost Opportunity