The relationship between Islamic law and international human rights law has been the subject of considerable, and heated, debate in recent years. The usual starting point has been to test one system by the standards of the other, asking is Islamic law 'compatible' with international human rights standards, or vice versa. This approach quickly ends in acrimony and accusations of misunderstanding. By overlaying one set of norms on another we overlook the deeply contextual nature of how legal rules operate in a society, and meaningful comparison and discussion is impossible. In this volume, leading experts in Islamic law and international human rights law attempt to deepen the understanding of human rights and Islam, paving the way for a more meaningful debate. Focusing on central areas of controversy, such as freedom of speech and religion, gender equality, and minority rights, the authors examine the contextual nature of how Islamic law and international human rights law are legitimately formed, interpreted, and applied within a community.
They examine how these fundamental interests are recognized and protected within the law, and what restrictions are placed on the freedoms associated with them. By examining how each system recognizes and limits fundamental freedoms, this volume clears the ground for exploring the relationship between Islamic law and international human rights law on a sounder footing. In doing so it offers a challenging and distinctive contribution to the literature on the subject, and will be an invaluable reference for students, academics, and policy-makers engaged in the legal and religious debates surrounding Islam and the West.
Benjamin Glahn is the Former Deputy Chief Program Officer and Program Director at the Salzburg Global Seminar.
Foreword ; 1. Editors' Introduction ; PART I: ISLAMIC LAW AND INTERNATIONAL HUMAN RIGHTS LAW ; Narrating Law ; Shari'a and the Modern State ; Commentary to Anver M. Emon "Shari'a and the Modern State" and Kathleen Cavanaugh "Narrating Law" ; Clearing Ground: Comment on "Shari'a and the Modern State" ; Commentary: Shari'a as Rule of Law ; PART II: FREEDOM OF SPEECH ; Rethinking the Universality of Human Rights: A Comparative Historical Proposal for the Idea of "Common Ground" with Other Moral Traditions ; Negotiating Speech in Islamic Law and Politics: Flipped Traditions of Expression ; The Great Divide and the Common Ground Between the United States and the Rest of the World ; PART III: FREEDOM OF RELIGION ; Freedom of Religion and Belief in International Law: A Comparative Analysis ; Pre-Modern Islamic Legal Restrictions on Freedom of Religion, with Particular Reference to Apostasy and its Punishment ; The Freedom of Religion and Expression: A Rule of Law Perspective ; Commentary ; PART IV: WOMEN'S EQUALITY ; Unveiling Equality: Disciplining the 'Other' Woman Through Human Rights Discourse ; Women in Search of Common Ground Between Islamic and International Human Rights Law ; Women and Islamic Law - Commentary ; Islamic and International Law: Searching for Common Ground: Musawah, CEDAW, and Muslim Family Laws in the 21st Century ; PART V: MINORITY RIGHTS ; Religious Minorities and Islamic Law: Accommodation and the Limits of Tolerance ; The Dialectic of International Law and the Contested Approaches to Minority Rights ; Religious Minorities and Islamic Law ; Islam vs. the Shari'a: Minority Protection within Islamic and International Legal Traditions ; Epilogue: Common Ground or Clearing Ground?
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