Level: 4

Credit: 15

Term: 1

 

Description of the module:

The module examines history, sources and terminology of Islamic jurisprudence. It will introduce key concepts along with historical impact while examining different phases, through its sources and methodologies, leading to the development of schools of law, legal theory and practices in pre-modern period.

 

Assessment methods

This module is assessed by a combination of a critical review and an essay:

 

Coursework Assignment 1: critical review

Word limit: 1500 words

Critically review one of the following:

  • Noel J Coulson, A History of Islamic Law, Islamic Surveys (Edinburgh:University Press, 1964)

 

  • Muhammad Kamali, Shari’ah Law: An Introduction ( Oxford: Oneworld Publication, 2008).

 

   End of year Assignment 2:  Essay

Word limit: 2000 words

Attempt one of the following topics:

  • Examine the role of the scholars ( ulama’) in the development of Islamic law.
  • Discuss the theory of abrogation( naskh)
  • Qur’an and the hadith are counted as they key foundational text in Islamic law. Discuss.
  • Explain the traditional theory of ijtihad with particular focus on analogical deduction (Qiyas) and juristic preference ( istihsan).
  • Discuss the role of custom (‘urf) in the legal reasoning.
  • Islamic law developed over various historical periods. Elaborate
  • Explain the key branches of Islamic law.
  • Elaborate on how modernity affected Islamic law.

(Further bibliography will be given for these topics )

 

Lectures’ schedule:

1- Overview of Islamic law

2- Foundational texts: the Qur’an part 1

Reading: ch.1 between and the Sultan & ch.2 Introduction to Islamic law by Hallaq

3- The Qur’an: part 2

Reading: ch.2 principle of Islamic jurisprudence

4- Ḥadith and its role in law

Reading: ch.3 principle of Islamic jurisprudence & ch.5 hadith Muhammad’s legacy by Brown

5- Theory of Ijtiahd subsidiary sources and types of legal ruling (hukm)

Reading: ch. 6 principle of Islamic jurisprudence & ch. 5 Shari‘ah by Kamali

6- The branches of Islamic law

Reading: ch. 6 Shari‘a by Hallaq

7- The branches of Islamic law (criminal)

Reading ch. 14 between God and the sultan

8- History of legalisation: who is who in the Shari’a?

Reading: ch. 1&3 Introduction to Islamic law by Hallaq

 9- Formation Legal schools

Reading ch.4 Shari‘ah by Kamali

10- Formation Legal schools

Reading: ch. 8 between God and the sultan

11- The modern period and the challenge of modernity

Reading: ch. 7 Introduction to Islamic law by Hallaq

 

Essential text

 Wael B. Hallaq, An Introduction to Islamic Law (Cambridge ; New York: Cambridge University Press, 2009)

Knut S. Vikor, Between God and the Sultan : A History of Islamic Law (Oxford England ; New York: Oxford University Press, 2005)

 

Bibliography 

 Brown, J, Hadith: Muhammad’s Legacy in the Medieval and Modern World (Clarendon Press, 2009).

Kamali, M, H, A Textbook of Hadith Studies (The Islamic Foundation, Leicester, 2005).

Mohammad Hashim Kamali, Principles of Islamic Jurisprudence. Rev. edn (Cambridge: Islamic Texts Society, 1991)

———————-  Shari’ah Law: An Introduction ( Oxford: Oneworld Publication, 2008).

Joseph  Schacht, An Introduction to Islamic Law (Oxfordshire; New York: Clarendon Press, 1982)

Christopher Melchert, The Formation of the Sunni Schools of Law, 9th-10th Centuries C.E, Studies in Islamic Law and Society (Leiden; New York: Brill, 1997)

Wael B. Hallaq, The Origins and Evolution of Islamic Law, Themes in Islamic Law (Cambridge, UK ; New York: Cambridge University Press, 2005)

Noel J Coulson, A History of Islamic Law, Islamic Surveys (Edinburgh:University Press, 1964)