Video – Ahmet Faruk Çelik and Taha Emre

On March 22, 2021, Ahmet Faruk Çelik and Taha Emre presented ” AI for Comparing and Understanding Ottoman Fatwa Collections.”

Event Video – Sohaib Baig

Sohaib Baig surveyed the dynamic histories of the Hanafi school (madhhab) and Sunni legal pluralism in the Indian Ocean in the early modern and modern periods. He explored how Hanafi interplay with other Sunni schools and traditions across multiple empires produced major transformations as Indian Hanafis reformulated foundational concepts concerning legal authority, including independent reasoning (ijtihād) and legal conformity (taqlīd). This talk explored some of these transformations, including the steady rise of hadith-based legal reasoning amongst Hanafis in the Indian Ocean, the expansion of legal fluidity between the Sunni legal schools, and the eventual displacement of the madhhabs as the central basis of Sunni legal authority in the modern period. Rather than explain such transformations primarily in terms of colonial modernity, this talk foregrounds Sunni legal pluralism and the power of its contending forces in shaping intellectual and legal history.

He was joined by Professor Manan Ahmed (Columbia University, Associate Professor, Department of History).

Event Video – Issam Eido

Issam Eido lectured on ʿĪsā b. Abān – a 9th-century Ḥanafī legal scholar who studied with and influenced leading Ḥanafī scholars of his period. He studied with Abū Ḥanīfa’s student Al-Shaybānī, and the well-known jurist Jaṣṣāṣ quoted him extensively in ways that offer further insight into the shape of early Ḥanafī law than has previously been reported. Most notably, amid the contested debates about the validity of ḥadīth as a reliable source of law, Ibn Abān constructing new criteria for measuring the authenticity of ḥadīth based on legal canons (qawāʿid fiqhiyya), and analogical reasoning (qiyās) as valid bases for legal interpretation and derivation. This talk exploreed those concepts.

He was be joined by Professor Ahmed El Shamsy (University of Chicago, Associate Professor, Division of the Humanities, Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations).

Video – Roundtable on Islamic Legal History and Historiography Live Webinar

The Program in Islamic Law hosted a live webinar to conclude and discuss the various contributions to the Roundtable on Islamic Legal History and Historiography! The Live Roundtable, which took place on Friday, March 5, 2021, takes stock of the state of scholarship on Islamic legal history and explores themes that emerged from the Roundtable that merited further scholarly attention. The first panel, “Social-historical studies: Legal texts as sources,” featured Michael Cook, Najam Haider, Carl Petry, Yossef Rapoport, Marina Rustow, and Elizabeth Urban. This was followed by the second panel, “Doctrinal studies: Approaches to fiqh texts,” which featured Ersilia Francesca, Rob Gleave, Haider Hammoudi, Marion Katz, and Sohaira Siddiqui. The final panel, “Quantitative methods: Computational approaches,” featured Metin Cosgel, Bogac Ergene, Irene Kirchner, and PIL Faculty Director,  Intisar Rabb. 

Video – Elias Saba Book Talk Webinar

Book talk webinar video with Dr. Elias Saba (Grinnell College, Senior Lecturer, Departments of History and Religious Studies) speaking on his new book Harmonizing Similarities: A History of Distinctions Literature in Islamic Law. He was joined by discussant Professor Ahmad A. Ahmad (UCSanta Barbara) and moderator Dr. Sohaib Baig, a Research Fellow at the Program in Islamic Law.

Video – N. Spannaus Book Talk Webinar

Book talk webinar video with Dr. Nathan Spannaus (University of Jyväskylä) speaking on his new book Preserving Islamic Tradition: Abu Nasr Qursawi and the Beginnings of Modern Reformism. He is joined by moderator Dr. Sohaib Baig, a research fellow at the Program in Islamic Law.


Video – E. Urban Book Talk Webinar

Book talk webinar video with Prof. Elizabeth Urban (WCU) speaking on her new book Conquered Populations in Early Islam: Non-Arabs, Slaves and the Sons of Slave Mothers. She was joined by discussant Prof. Matthew Gordon (Miami).