Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Toward a legal understanding of the shari'a
by Hamoudi, Haider Ala, J.S.D., Columbia University, 2008, 258; 3317650
Abstract (Summary)

This dissertation makes three central contentions about the shari'a in modern Muslim society, in an attempt to provide a corrective to the fascination of many current scholars on medieval texts whose relevance to the legal order of the modern world is largely overstated, or at least not properly understood. The first contention, explored in Part I, is the familiar Legal Realist claim that the shari'a is largely unconstrained by the terms of foundational text. Part II argues that shari'a is similarly largely unconstrained by classical doctrine, or, more aptly put, it is fundamentally modern in that it is far more responsive to current political and social circumstances than it is a faithful application of historic understandings. Finally, as Part III shows, the shari'a is pluralist , in that for the most part, it may be considered to be a legal system, but not one that supplants or replaces either national law or the inescapable reality of the nation-state, but rather is an additional source of order within the state, either through incorporation into national law or through parallel application and in such cases entirely divorced from state law.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Fletcher, George
Commitee:
School: Columbia University
School Location: United States -- New York
Source: DAI-A 69/05, Dissertation Abstracts International
Source Type: DISSERTATION
Subjects: Law
Keywords: Commercial law, Islamic commerce, Islamic finance, Islamic law, Legal realism, Shari'a
Publication Number: 3317650
ISBN: 9780549657460
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