By Amel Bensalim Professor Marina Rustow's note: "Having been asked twice now to contribute to the ILB, I’ve been making my way into the corpus of Islamic notarial documents preserved in Cairo Geniza. In the hope of understanding them better, I taught a PhD seminar on them in Fall 2022. Two of my students, Amel … Continue reading Getting to know iqrārs
By Marina Rustow I came into my graduate seminar on Arabic legal documents with some experience in paleography and diplomatics, but vanishingly little knowledge of the material I was going to be teaching. I knew I wouldn’t always, or even often, have answers about how to read the sources, let alone how the judicial system … Continue reading Why I No Longer Use the Term “Qāḍī-Court Documents”
By Marina Rustow Legal documents have survived from the medieval Islamic world in considerable quantity, but the mystery of their quotidian production and use abides. The mystery concerns personnel and physical location: Who wrote documents, and where? Where did witnesses sign them? To what extent were judges involved in their production and handling? Over the … Continue reading Are Medieval Arabic Judicial Documents as Opaque as They Look?
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. 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