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INTRODUCTION TO ISLAMIC LAW: The Historical Development and Foundations of the Islams Legal Schools HARTFORD SEMINARY

Winter/Spring 2014

Professor: Dr. Feryal Salem Office Hours: Tuesdays, 12:00-2:00 or by appointment Email: fsalem@hartsem.edu Phone: (860) 509-9531 COURSE DESCRIPTION: The evolution of Islamic legal reasoning is a sophisticated aspect of the Islamic tradition with many related topics for exploration. This course will examine the foundations of Islamic law from a multifaceted approach. It will begin by tracing the early development of Islamic law within the first two centuries of Islamic history before individually examining the major schools which developed. Legal methodologies used to derive Islamic law and samples from legal problems will be examined to understand the different ways in which Muslim jurists used the same materials from the Quran and hadith sources to arrive at different legal conclusions. Contemporary issues related to the relevance of Islamic law in the modern age and the historical

impact these schools had, both in the Muslim world and beyond, will also be discussed; provoking continued thought and study.

COURSE REQUIREMENTS: Students will be introduced to the history and key concepts of Islamic law through a combination of lectures, readings, and assignments. Each weeks theme will have a variety of readings that students will be required to engage through assigned questions on the discussion forum as well as one of four class reflection assignments in which students will answer assigned questions about the readings and/or lectures individually. This is a formal assignment and therefore students will be expected to write accordingly. Late assignments will not be accepted. I will be communicating with students weekly either in the form of a lecture presentation and/or comments in the discussion forum. Because this is an online class, participation in the forum is an important part of the grade. In addition, students will be required to write a final 12-15 page research paper on a topic related to Islamic Law and agreed upon beforehand between the instructor and the student. Topics may include an analysis of the legal methodologies of any of the schools covered in the course, the relationship of historical frameworks with those of the contemporary period, or an examination of a particular aspect of Islamic law and the way various legal schools interact with it. The class schedule is subject to change

by the instructor.
LEARNING GOALS: To understand the early framework from which legal schools evolved To understand the major schools of law within the Islamic tradition in terms of historical development and significance To understand the various intellectual tools of legal reasoning used by legists to derive rulings To be able understand the reasons which legal schools differ and how their methods of interpretation were used in various cases To be able to critically engage contemporary issues related to the use of Islamic law To be able to make historical connections between formal legal schools and many later scholastic institutions which they influence
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FORUM POSTING GUIDELINES: One of the challenges of online learning environments is maintaining an opportunity for class interaction while avoiding a tendency for the forum to mushroom into a plethora of independent discussions and statements of varying levels of accuracy; which cannot all be practically addressed in written form. Hence, it is essential for students to follow guidelines in posting on the forum to keep the class discussion a positive learning experience for all students through focused engagement. All posts must be related to the assigned question for that week. Staying on topic is essential for maintaining the relevance of the discussion forum in a large online class. You may post a thoughtful response to one other student as well as post your own answer to the assigned question. Students may not start a new discussion thread on the course site. All posts must maintain a level of professionalism and respect for all of the participants in the forum. Posts which do not meet these guidelines may be removed.

GRADE DISTRIBUTION: 1) Weekly Discussion Forum Assignments: 20% 2) 4 Class Reflection Assignments: 10% each = 40% 3) Final Research Paper: 40% ACADEMIC HONESTY In addition to the plagiarism policy in the Student Handbook, the following apply: 1) Students may not recycle their own or other peoples work. 2) Students may use the internet for their research papers. However, students must explicitly cite any material that has been taken from the internet or other sources and in most cases are urged to paraphrase rather than copy and paste. 3) Your answers for the four class reflection assignments must be based on the assigned readings and lectures. Students may not search for the answers to these assignments on the internet or from any third party.

REQUIRED BOOKS: Abu Zahra, Muhammad. The Four Imams: Their Lives Works and Schools of Jurisprudence. Translation by Aisha Bewly. Dar al-Taqwa, 2010. Kamali, Mohammad Hashim. Principles of Islamic Jurisprudence. Islamic Texts Society, 2005.

RECOMMENDED TEXTS AND RESOURCES: Ibn Ashur, Treatise on Maqid al-Sharah. Tr. Mohamed El-Tahir El-Mesawi. Washington, International Institute of Islamic Thought. Bin Bayyah, Abd Allah. Islamic Discourse between Conclusive and Variable. Tabah Research Papers. El Shamsy, Ahmed. The Canonization of Islamic Law. Oxford University Press. Farouki, Suha Taji and Basheer Nafi Eds. Islamic Thought in the Twentieth Century. I.B. Tauris. Haddad, Gibril. The Four Imams. Muslim Academic Trust. Hermansen, Marcia. Shah Waliullahs Treatises on Islamic Law. Fons Vitae. Lahham, Karim. Muhammad Shahrurs Cargo Cult: A Meditation on His Underlying Conceptual Framework. Tabah Research Papers. Landgraf-Wymann, Umar F. Abd-Allah. Malik and Medina. Brill. --------- Living Islam with Purpose. Tabah Research Papers. Makdisi, George. The Rise of Colleges. Edinburgh University Press. ----------- Scholasticism and Humanism in Classical Islam and the Christian West. Journal of the American Oriental Society, vol. 109, no. 2; pp. 175-82. Melchert, Christopher. Formation of Sunni Schols of Law. Leiden, Brill. Misri, Ahmad b. Naqib. Reliance of a Traveller: A Classic Manual of Islamic Sacred Law. Tr. Nuh Ha Mim Keller. Sunna Books.

Murad, Abd al-Hakim, Understanding the Four Madhhabs: The Facts about Ijtihad and Taqlid. Muslim Academic Trust. Raysuni, Ahmad. Imam al-Shatibis Theory of the Higher Objectives and Intents of Islamic Law. International Institute of Islamic Thought. Ibn Rushd, The Distinguished Jurists Primer 1 Bidyat al-Mujtahid wa nihyat al-Muqtaid). Tr. Imran Ahsan Nyazee. London: Garnet Publishing. Stewart, Devin. Islamic Legal Orthodoxy: Twelver Shiite Responses to the Sunni Legal System. University of Utah Press. Tabtabai, Sayyid Muhammad Husayn. Shiite Islam. State University of New York Press. Winter, T.J. Cambridge Companion to Classical Islamic Theology. Cambridge Ibn Yusuf, Abdur Rahman. Fiqh al-Imam: Key Proofs in Hanafi Fiqh. White Thread Press.

CLASS SCHEDULE:
Week 1: Early Development of Islamic Law Lecture 1 (Presentation) Mustafa Sad Alkhan, Abth awl Ul al-Fiqh al-Islm, pp. 11-61. El Shamsy, Introduction, in Canonization of Islamic Law, pp. 1-13. Principles, Quran and Sunna, pp.16-111. Abd Allah, Living Islam with Purpose.

Week 2: Early Development of Islamic Law Lecture 2 (Presentation) Hermansen, Causes of Disagreements Between: Companions and Followers of Positive Law; Legal Schools of the Jurists; People of Hadith and Personal Opinion, Chaps. 1-3/pp. 5-43. Kamali, Ijm and Qiys, pp. 228-301.

Week 3: Early Development of Islamic Law Lecture 3 (Presentation) Umar F. Abd-Allah Wyman-Landgraf, Introduction: Malik in Medina, pp. 2-29. Melchert, Christopher. Formation of the Sunni Schools of Law, pp. 1-67. *Reflection Assignment 1

Week 4: Imm Ab anfa and his School Haddad, Abu Hanifa al-Numn, pp. 7-119. Abu Zahra, pp. 123-255. Listen to Imam Abu Hanifa: Baghdads Auspicious Fortune at:
http://quilliampress.com/video/imam-abu-hanifa/

Week 5: Imm Mlik and His School Listen to Imam Malik: The Sage of the City of Light at: http://quilliampress.com/video/imam-malik/ Umar F. Abd-Allah, Maliks Medina and the World Beyond, Chap.1/pp.33-84 El Shamsy, Canonization, pp. 17-44.

Week 6: Imm al-Shfi and His School


Listen to Imam Shafii: The Worshipping Jurist at: http://quilliampress.com/video/imam-al-

shafii/ Abu Zahra, pp. 257-382. El Shamsy, Canonization, pp. 44-87.

Week 7: Imm Amad b. anbal and His School Melchert. Christopher. Ahmad b. Hanbal. Chapters 2-4. Abu Zahra, pp. 383-498. Listen to Ahmad b. Hanbal: Victor over Tribulation at: http://quilliampress.com/video/imamahmad-ibn-hanbal/

*Reflection Assignment 2

Week 8: The Development of the Shia Schools Stewart, Islamic Legal Orthodoxy: Twelver Shiite Responses to the Sunni Legal System. abab, Shiite Islam, pp. 39-115. Abdallah, Cambridge Companion to Classical Islamic Theology. Theological Dimmensions of Islamic Law.

Week 9: The Development of Formal Legal Schools

El Shamsy, Canonization Beyond the Shafii School, pp. 194-226. Makdisi, Excerpts from Rise of Colleges, Rise of Schools of Law pp. 1-34 and Islam and the Christian West, pp. 224-280. Makdisi, Scholasticism and Humanism in Classical Islam and the Christian West. El Shamsy, Cambridge Companion of Classical Islamic Theology, The Social Construction of Orthodoxy.

Week 10: Reasons for Juristic Differences Lecture (Presentation) Bin Bayyah, Abd Allah. Islamic Discourse Between Conclusive and Variable Kamali, pp. 313-409.
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Week 11: Legal Methodology and Samples from Primary Texts Ibn Rushd, Book of Akm of the Deceased, pp. 259-282. Ibn Rushd, The Nisab and the Rates of Zakat, pp. 295-313. Fiqh al-Imam: Key Proofs in Hanafi Fiqh, Issue of Amin p. 87-96 and How Many Rakaas of Witr? pp. 133-152. al-Misri, Reliance of a Traveller, Book of the Funeral Prayer, pp. 220-243 Abd-Allah, An Overview of Maliks Reasoning, Chap.2/ pp. 85-182. Ibn Ashur: Treatise on the Maqasid al-Sharia, pp. 3-59. *Reflection Assignment 3

Week 12: Contemporary Debates: Legal Modernists Commins, The Wahabbi Mission and Saudi Arabia pp. 7-70. Bernard Haykel, On the Nature of Salafi Thought and Practice, Global Salafism, p. 33-57. Hourani, Arabic Thought in the Liberal Age, Muhammad Abduh pp. 130-192 and Rashid Rida pp. 221-244. Basheer Nafi. The Rise of Islamic Reformist Thought pp.28-60.

Week 13: Contemporary Debates: Response of Scholastic Traditionalists Murad, Abd al-Hakim. Understanding the Four Madhhabs Karim Lahham, Muhammad Shahrurs Cargo Cult: A Meditation on His Underlying Conceptual Framework. Buti, al-L madhhabiyya (translation) Al-Hajj, Fatwa on Following Rightly Guided Scholars. *Reflection Assignment 4 FINAL PAPER DUE
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