- Paperback: 306 pages
- Publisher: Cambridge University Press (October 28, 1999)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0521599865
- ISBN-13: 978-0521599863
- Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.7 x 9 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 5 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #924,267 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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A History of Islamic Legal Theories: An Introduction to Sunni Usul al-fiqh
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"...useful for some purposes of reference and basic instruction by students of Islamic jurisprudence...." Aziz Al-Azmeh, History of Religions
"...a lucid, nuanced, and sophisticated study based on extensive reading in the sources. A History of Islamic Legal Theories provides an excellent starting-point to follow these important debates that will help determine the future direction of Muslim societies." David S. Powers, Middle East Quarterly
"For over a decade, Wael B. Hallaq has written articles that qualify him to write the only comprehensive introduction to the science of usul al-fiqh in English. He has successfully exposed the intracacies and complexities of this science in a way that will achieve his declared aim of introducing Islamic legal theory both to students of Islam adn to those unfamiliar with Islamic tradition." Murteza Bedir, MESA Bulletin
"Hallaq evidently loves a good argument, and this book is no exception. He states his claims forthrightly, challenging the rest of the field to respond. There is no doubt that this book will generate responses for years to come, and that the ensuing discussion will move the study of the theoretical underpinnings of Islamic law to a new level." Middle East Journal
"The author of this volume, who is an important scholar of Islamic law, has fashioned a succinct and lucid entree to a complex and difficult subject." Religious Studies Review
"...this book offers reading of great value for anyone curious about the future--as well as the past--of Sunni jurisprudence." Earl Finbar Murphy, H-Net Reviews
Wael B. Hallaq is already established as one of the most eminent scholars in the field of Islamic law. In his latest book, he traces the history of Islamic legal theory from its beginnings until the modern period.
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The beginning chapters wherein the method of Islamic jurisprudence is outlined are helpful, the middle section which treats primarily the thought of medieval scholar Shatibi will only be of interest to specialists.
Fortunately, the final chapters provide an engagin and interesting survey of different movements that are afoot, desiring to, in some cases radically, reformulate or reconfigure how the shari'a is discerned and applied to Islamic society today.
This book is extremely well written. Although it reads like a textbook, this merely reflects the high level of scholarship the author brings to his subject. The analysis is precise, thorough, and clearly explained. He touches a point once, addresses it completely, and then moves on. An essential read.
The weakness of Hallaq's work is that its contents are unbalanced. I wish more time was spent on the formation of fiqh and the justification of its existence. Nonetheless, his treatment of these topics is solid. This work can be a little tedious @ times, but usul al-fiqh is itself tedious. In the whole spectrum of the book, one realizes that this itself is part and parcel to the reform occuring today. Excellent work but by no means a decisive study to answer all questions-too short.