“How anti-Shariah marches mistake Muslim concepts of state and religious law”: Asifa Quraishi-Landes in the Religion News Service

In the wake of anti-sharīʿa marches across the United States,  Senior Scholar Asifa Quraishi-Landes clarifies in the Religion News Service the history of state and religious law in Islamic legal history. Read the entire article.  "To make things even more complicated for American observers, fiqh doesn’t neatly fit into Western categories of law and morality. … Continue reading “How anti-Shariah marches mistake Muslim concepts of state and religious law”: Asifa Quraishi-Landes in the Religion News Service

The Ongoing Public Debate on Islam in the Netherlands

Jan Jaap de Ruiter discusses the public debate on Islam and sharīʿa in the Netherlands shortly before the March 15th parliamentary elections. Update from the author, March 20, 2017: The parliamentary elections on March 15th resulted in a modest gain of the populist voice. Though the Netherlands will continue to have a coalition government, the end of the elections … Continue reading The Ongoing Public Debate on Islam in the Netherlands

Is Sharīʿa Incompatible with the Modern Administrative State?

Anver Emon's (Professor of Law at the University of Toronto Faculty of Law and SHARIAsource senior scholar) new paper Codification and Islamic Law: The Ideology Behind a Tragic Narrative in the Journal of Middle East Law and Governance challenges the now popular argument that Islamic law is near-impossible to formalize as state law. Treating Islamic law … Continue reading Is Sharīʿa Incompatible with the Modern Administrative State?

ELECTION DAY 2016 :: Civil Rights Sharīʿa and the Elections as a Part of the American Political Process

On election day 2016, Professor Intisar Rabb, SHARIAsource founding editor-in-chief, reflects on the notion of “civil rights sharīʿa”: the role that Islamic law has historically played in honoring and pressing for shared commitments to justice and equality under the law. Modern American history already exemplifies this notion in the legacy of boxing legend Muhammad Ali, who died as … Continue reading ELECTION DAY 2016 :: Civil Rights Sharīʿa and the Elections as a Part of the American Political Process

CASE COMMENT: Shamim Ara and the Divorce Politics of a Secular and Modern India

South Asia editor Jeff Redding argues that the "state vs. non-state character of talaq" is too often overlooked as a factor influencing the Indian Supreme Court's decision in the landmark case Shamim Ara v. State of U.P. (2002). While the decision's positive effect on Muslim women's welfare in India cannot be denied, the contemporary Indian state's concerns about presenting itself as a … Continue reading CASE COMMENT: Shamim Ara and the Divorce Politics of a Secular and Modern India

REVIEW: Privacy in Islamic Legal History (A Review of Christian Lange, “Privacy in Islamic Law” (2009))

Utrecht University's Chair of Arabic and Islamic Studies Christian Lange takes a historical view on the question of privacy in Islamic law. On his review of the medieval discussions of privacy, he notes that they arise mainly in the domain of the private sphere of the family and sometimes have trickle-down effects into the criminal law arena. "Norms, … Continue reading REVIEW: Privacy in Islamic Legal History (A Review of Christian Lange, “Privacy in Islamic Law” (2009))

Privacy in Islamic Law in the Modern State

Guest contributors Vidusha Mardi and Bhaira Acharya examine issues of privacy and the state in Islamic law with the baseline argument that privacy is the default rule in Islamic law and that the public sphere, into which the state may intrude, is the exception to this rule. As they put it, Islamic law recognizes that "every society [must] impose certain requirements … Continue reading Privacy in Islamic Law in the Modern State

CASES TO WATCH: Can a Judge Determine Acceptable Religious Attire in a Canadian Courtroom?

Guest contributor Jennifer Selby uses the recent case of Rania El-Alloul in Quebec, Canada to situate an ongoing debate at the intersection of secularism and religious freedom. Citing her courtroom as a "secular space," Quebec provincial court judge Eliana Marengo dismissed Rania El-Alloul from her courtroom for wearing a hijab. Selby examines the legality of this action by appealing to … Continue reading CASES TO WATCH: Can a Judge Determine Acceptable Religious Attire in a Canadian Courtroom?

The Construction and Failure of Islamic Laws of Evidence in ISIS’s State-Building Project

Guest contributor Mara Revkin outlines the legal infrastructure of ISIS. She argues that the movement's barbarism and apparently wanton acts of terrorism belies a self-contained legal system based on Islamic law – including the Islamic law of evidence. Using interviews with eighty-two Syrians and Iraqis, Revkin reconstructs how evidence is used within ISIS's purported borders. … Continue reading The Construction and Failure of Islamic Laws of Evidence in ISIS’s State-Building Project