Adjudication as Official Duty: Regular Activities in a Bureaucratically Governed Structure

By Nahed Samour Bureaucratization demands regular activities and official duties. These duties are a central aspect of a bureaucratically governed structure. Regularity is important particularly in the application and adjudication of the law so as to minimize arbitrariness.[1] Regularity can create transparency, accessibility, and accountability, and thereby add to adjudicative authority within a bureaucratically established … Continue reading Adjudication as Official Duty: Regular Activities in a Bureaucratically Governed Structure

Judicial Bureaucracy: Revisiting Modern Theory for the Study of Islamic Law

By Nahed Samour Surely, Max Weber was wrong with his assumptions about Kadi-Justice (kadijustiz).[1] He is rightly criticized as a modernization theorist, placing a protestant work ethics at the centre of progress in the modern West, which was picked up to explain a “global envy” of the West and an obsession to imitate it, encouraging … Continue reading Judicial Bureaucracy: Revisiting Modern Theory for the Study of Islamic Law

Weekend Scholarship Roundup

SCHOLARSHIP ROUNDUP On Islamic Law: In "Legal Canons—In the Classroom and in the Courtroom or, Comparative Perspective on the Origins of Islamic Legal Canons, 1265–1519" (Villanova Law Review 66, no. 5 (2022)), Intisar Rabb (Editor-in-Chief; Harvard University) traces the origins of Islamic law canons, with a focus on how those canons were utilized in Islamic … Continue reading Weekend Scholarship Roundup

Back to the Isnād: The Prophetization of the Sunna

By Mathieu Tillier This is part four in a series of four posts on the historical formation of the Sunna, with a focus on methodological reflections on the emergence of Prophetic authority. In the first three posts in this series on the historical formation of the Sunna, I have argued that it is possible to … Continue reading Back to the Isnād: The Prophetization of the Sunna

From Anonymous Dicta to the Prophet’s Sunna

By Mathieu Tillier This is part three in a series of four posts on the historical formation of the Sunna, with a focus on methodological reflections on the emergence of Prophetic authority. The history of Islamic law and that of ḥadīth are closely connected. As I recalled in my previous posts, prophetic authority as expressed … Continue reading From Anonymous Dicta to the Prophet’s Sunna

Imploring God and the “Living Tradition”: A Relative Chronology of Epigraphic and Traditional Invocations

By Mathieu Tillier This is part two in a series of four posts on the historical formation of the Sunna, with a focus on methodological reflections on the emergence of Prophetic authority. Stating that the sunna of the Prophet represents a major source of classical Islamic law may appear as self-evident. Many legal rulings are … Continue reading Imploring God and the “Living Tradition”: A Relative Chronology of Epigraphic and Traditional Invocations

Early Fiqh and the Issue of Ḥadīth Dating

By Mathieu Tillier This is part one in a series of four posts on the historical formation of the Sunna, with a focus on methodological reflections on the emergence of Prophetic authority. Classical Islamic law hermeneutics relied on four well-known sources: the Qur’ān, the sunna, consensus, and analogy (qiyās). The first two represent textual sources … Continue reading Early Fiqh and the Issue of Ḥadīth Dating

Islamic law and the documentary record before 1500: Unsolved problems and untried solutions

By Marina Rustow (Princeton University) This essay is part of the Islamic Law Blog’s Roundtable on Islamic Legal History & Historiography, edited by Intisar Rabb (Editor-in-Chief) and Mariam Sheibani (Lead Blog Editor), and introduced with a list of further readings in the short post by Intisar Rabb: “Methods and Meaning in Islamic Law: Introduction." Although … Continue reading Islamic law and the documentary record before 1500: Unsolved problems and untried solutions

Weekend Scholarship Roundup

The Ottoman History Podcast's series on "The Making of the Islamic World" is now available online in its entirety. The project is a ten-part series consisting of interviews with a diverse group of scholars on a number of scholarly issues, ranging from the question of "What is Islamic Law?" to "The Early Modern Islamic World." … Continue reading Weekend Scholarship Roundup

Why did legal scholars write the books they wrote in pre-modern Islamic societies? The case of al-Andalus

By Maribel Fierro (Institute of Languages and Cultures of the Mediterranean, CSIC-Madrid) This essay is part of the Islamic Law Blog’s Roundtable on Islamic Legal History & Historiography, edited by Intisar Rabb (Editor-in-Chief) and Mariam Sheibani (Lead Blog Editor), and introduced with a list of further readings in the short post by Intisar Rabb: “Methods and … Continue reading Why did legal scholars write the books they wrote in pre-modern Islamic societies? The case of al-Andalus