The LAWALISI team host one-day workshops every two months whereby scholars working on Sunni and Shiite law come together and share their research results in an informal setting. This provides an opportunity for emerging and established scholars to mix and network and for scholars working on the two legal traditions to explore the diversity of the Islamic legal tradition. The workshops are often text-based with presenters leading the group through Arabic texts.

23rd – 24th July 2018: Texts on Āmm and Khāṣṣ in Uṣūl al-Fiqh

In this workshop we studied texts relating to the general and the particular (‘Āmm and Khāṣṣ) in works of Islamic legal theory (uṣūl al-fiqh). We examined how God’s speech in revelation is understood by Muslim legal theorists to be general in linguistic form, but particular in meaning. The texts covered a wide time period, with the earliest being in the 11th century CE and the most recent being in the early 19th century and a range of legal traditions, enabling us to track themes through time and across confessional boundaries.

Texts examined:

al-Sharīf al-Murtaḍā, al-Dharī‘a ilā uṣūl al-sharīʿa (Tehran: University of Tehran, 1376Sh), v.1, 1, pp.237-238. (Rob Gleave)

Muḥammad b. Ḥasan al-Ṭūsī (d. 460/1068), al-‘Udda fī uṣūl al-fiqh (Qum: al- Muhaqqiq, 1417/1996-7), v.1, pp. 336-35. (Alex Hainy)

Abū Ya‘lā al-Ḥanbalī (d.458/1066), al-‘Udda fī uṣūl al-fiqh (Beirut: Dār al- Kutub al-ʻIlmīyah, 2002), pp.484-569 (selections).  (Rodrigo Adem)

Ibn Taymiyya (d. 728/1328), al-Tafsīr al-kabīr, (Beirut: Dār al-Kutub al-ʿIlmiyyah, 1408/1988), v.7, pp. 228- 231. (Abd al-Rahman Mustafa)

al-Qarāfī (d. 684/1285), Sharḥ Tanqīḥ al-fuṣūl, (Beirut: Dār al-Fikr, 1424/2004), pp. 321-325. (Abd al-Rahman Mustafa)

Mīrzā Qummī (d.1231/1815-16), Qawānīn al-Uṣūl (Beirut: Dār al-Murtaḍā, 1431/2010) , v.2, p.72-92. (Ali-Reza Bhojani)

Participants: Mahdiyyeh Abdulhussain; Rodrigo Adem; Najah Ahmad; Hassan Al-Bulushi, Omar Anchassi; Mustafa Baig; Alireza Bhojani; Rob Gleave (Director of LAWALISI project); Paul Gledhill (LAWALISI); Alexander Hainy; Wissam Halawi (LAWALISI); Sohaira Siddiqui; Abd al-Rahman Mustafa; Kumail Rajani, Pooya Razavian.

10th – 11th May 2018: Texts on îjâb wa-qubûl in Islamic Marriage Law

This workshop aimed to see how rules on ījāb wa-qubūl have been developed and established by jurists in Islamic Marriage Law, and to explore to what extent it was constraining; but also, to examine, where possible, its potential basis in both uṣūl al-fiqhand uṣūl al-Dīn. We examined a series of legal texts written in three different contexts: Sunnī, Shīʿī and Druze. In addition, the concept of guardianship was analysed based on a series of early and premodern legal Islamic texts, as well as the doctrine of nikāḥ al-bāṭinin Ismaʿīlī theology. Draft translations were produced and discussed by participants.    

 Topics and texts examined:

 The theory of majlis al-ʿaqd in marriage contract” (Moussa Abou Ramadan)

 Kafāʾand guardianship in Ibn Taymiyya’s Majmūʿ al-fatāwa and al-Tarsūsī’s Anfaʾ al-wasāʾil” (Yossef Rappoport)

 Al-riḍā wa-l-taslīm in Druze Marriage Law” (Wissam H. Halawi) 

 Al-nikāḥ al-bāṭin in al-Tabarānā’s K. al-hāwā fī ʿilm al-fatawī” (Fârès Gillon)

 Guardianship in the Muṣannaf of ʿAbd al-Razzāq (d. 211/826)” (Hocine Benkheira)

 Taqdīm al-qabūl ʿala al-ījāb in Shīʿī jurisprudence: the al-Manāhil of al-Sayyid Mujāhid Muḥammad al-Ṭabaṭabāʾī (d.1242/1827)” (Robert Gleave)

Participants: Moussa Abou Ramadan (Strasbourg Univ.); Hocine Benkheira (CNRS, Paris); Fârès Gillon (EPHE, Paris); Robert Gleave (LAWALISI project); Paul Gledhill (LAWALISI project); Wissam H. Halawi (LAWALISI project); Yossef Rapoport (Queen Mary).

22nd – 23rd MARCH 2018: Texts on ZakātKhumsǦizya and taxation in Medieval Fiqh 

The aim of this workshop was to analyse how medieval and modern jurists elaborated rules on religious taxation in Islamic positive law. We examined a series of legal texts focussing on the sections on zakātkhums and ǧizya, and explored the contrasts between the treatment of these religious duties in different political contexts and legal traditions (Sunnī, Imāmī, Zaydī). The issues of translating this type of texts were discussed, with draft translations produced.

Topics and texts examined:

“Zaydī zakāt fiqh and the maʿūna tax” in Sīrat al-Imām al-Mutawakkil Aḥmad b. Sulaymān (d. 566/1171) and Maǧmūʿat rasāʾil al-Imām al-Manṣūr ʿAbdallāh b. Ḥamza (d. 614/1217) (Eirik Hovden)

Zakāt and ḫums in al-Muqniʿa of Shaykh al-Mufīd (d. 413/1022)” (Wissam Halawi)

“Recipients of zakāt in Riyāḍ al-Masāʾil of Al-Sayyid ʿAlī al-Ṭabatabāʾī (d. 1241/1816)” (Rob Gleave)

“Import tax in K. al-zakāt of the Hidāya” (Sohail Hanif)

The ǧizya in aḥkām ahl al-ḏimma of Ibn al-Qayyim (d. 751/1351)” (Antonia Bosanquet)

Participants: Mehrdad Alipour; Mustafa Baig; Antonia Bosanquet; Robert Gleave (LAWALISI project); Wissam Halawi (LAWALISI project); Sohail Hanif; Eirik Hovden; Kumail Rajani and Mohammad-Payam Saadat-Sarmadi.

22nd JANUARY 2018: Texts on Naskh in late classical Uṣūl al-Fiqh

In this workshop, we examined a series of late classical texts of Islamic legal theory, focussing on the sections on abrogation (naskh). The contrasts between the treatment of the subject in Sunni and Shīʿī legal traditions were explored, and the issues of translating this type of texts were discussed, with draft translations produced.

Texts examined:

Muḥammad Ḥusayn al-Ḥāʾirī (d.1250/1834), al-Fuṣūl al-Gharawiyya fī al-uṣūl al-fiqhiyya (Rob Gleave)

Badr al-Dīn al-Zarkashi (d.793/1392), al-Baḥr al-Muḥīṭ fī uṣūl al-fiqh (Kuwait, 1992CE), v.4, p.63-76. (Najah Ahmed)

Mullā Jīwan (d. 1130/1718), Nūr al-Anwār sharḥ al-anwār (Sadiqabad, 1419AH),  v.1, p.589-604. (Mansur Ali)

Mīrzā Abū al-Qāsim al-Qummī (d.1231/1816), al-Qawānīn al-Maḥkama fī al-uṣūl al-matqana (Qum, 1430AH), v.3, pp.2-14. (Ali-Rida Rizek)

Participants: Asad Q. Ahmed, Najah Ahmed, Mansur Ali, Mehrdad Alipour, Omar Anchassi, Philipp Bruckmayr, Feriel Bouhafa, Rob Gleave (LAWALISI project), Paul Gledhill (LAWALISI project), Wissam Halawi (LAWALISI project), Majid Montazermahdi and Walter Edward Young.

27th- 28th NOVEMBER 2017: Ḥadīth and Law in Early Islam

Our aim at this workshop was to explore topics related to the development of ḥadīth and Islamic law in the 8th and 9th centuries, especially rijāl criticism, legal historiography, the relation of fiqh to ḥadīth and evidence of interaction between the Sunni and Shiʿi legal traditions. We were fortunate to attract contributions from the following scholars:

Criticism of transmitters in the 2nd and 3rd Centuries AH: The terms kadhdhāb and madār (Pavel Pavlovitch, Sofia)

Statistical analysis of isnāds as a method for determining the provenance, and the currency in time and place, of legal rules in the 8th century CE (Hiroyuki Yanagihashi, Tokyo)

Ibn Abī Laylá (d. ca. 148/765‐6) in biography, ḥadīth criticism, and early ḥadīth collections (Paul Gledhill, Exeter)

How early biographical dictionaries from the Islamic West (al-Andalus and Ifriqiya) represent the ahl al‐ḥadīth and ahl al‐raʾy; Baqī b. Makhlad, Ibn Waḍḍāḥ, and the merging of raʾy and ḥadīth; how the legal doctrine regarding Q. 4:35 (the two arbiters) reflected the Sunni/Shīʿī divide (Maribel Fierro, Madrid)

The controversy over reciting the Qurʾan with tones (al‐qirāʾah bi‐l‐alḥān(Christopher Melchert, Oxford)

The use of ḥadīth in the work of early Arabic grammarians (Monique Bernards, Leuven)

The epistolary practice of the Imams and their agents, and the masāʾil genre as a bridging mechanism between the practical mechanics of Imamic legal authority and the preservation of Imamic hadith for posterity in the form of books; the use of reports of the Imams to trace the development of the doctrine of khums (Ed Hayes, Leiden)

Other participants: Rob Gleave (Exeter), Wissam Halawi (Exeter) and John Nawas (Leuven).

9-10 OCTOBER 2017: The relationship of Uṣūl to Furūʿ in Islamic Legal Traditions

In this workshop, we selected a principle of interpretation as found explicated in a work of uṣūl, and then explored its application in a work of fiqh. The relationship between uṣūl and furūʿ varied from constant explicit reference to uṣūl in fiqh writings, to an absence of reference, with legal reasoning being driven by other concerns.

Texts examined:

Ibn Ḥazm on whether the imperative applies to both men and women (Tariq Al-Timimi)

Abū al-Qāsim al-Khūʾī on the Form of the Imperative and Consensus (Hadi Rizvi)

Ibn Rushd on contradictory indicators (Serdar Kurnaz)

Al-ʿAllāma al-Ḥillī on preference between reports and classification of things before revelation (Ali Rida Rizek)

Participants: Tariq Al-Timimi, Mustafa Baig, Rob Gleave, Paul Gledhill, Wissam Halawi, Serdar Kurnaz, Tayyeb Mimouni, Ali Rida Rizek, Hadi Rizvi, Abdullah Sliti, Enise Yakar and Sumeyra Yakar.

17-18 JULY 2017: Uṣūl al-fiqh and linguistic interpretation

We discussed how uṣūlīs conceived of how language came into being and how it is used in revelatory texts. Whether there are conceptions of language specific to theological traditions, or whether the techniques of exegesis are used or discarded inconsistently was also a topic of discussion.

Texts examined:

Al-Ghazālī, al-Mustaṣfā min ʿilm al-uṣūl (Rana Alsoufi)

Muḥammad Riḍā al-Muẓaffar, Uṣūl al-fiqh (Alireza Bhojani)

Ibn ʿAqīl, al-Wāḍiḥ fī uṣūl al-fiqh (Feriel Bouhafa)

Muḥammad Bāqir alaṢadr, Durūs fī ʿIlm al-uṣūl, al-Ḥalaqa al-Thālitha (Alexander Hainy)

Fakhr al-dīn al-Rāzī, al-Maḥṣūl fī ʿilm uṣūl al-fiqh (Nora Kalbarczyk )

Participants: Najah Ahmed, Abdullah Alobaid, Rana Alsoufi, Alireza Bhojani, Ziad Bou Akl, Feriel Bouhafa, Rob Gleave, Paul Gledhill, Alexander Hainy, Wissam Halawi, Nora Kalbarczyk, Kumail Rajani, and Hadi Rizvi.

22-23 MAY 2017: Quran and Legal Interpretation

In this workshop, we examined the legal interpretation of specific Quranic verses, and both the common and unique methods of interpretation in Sunni and Shīʿī legal texts. How jurists derived legal rulings derived from Quranic verses was the principal focus of our discussions.

Texts examined:

Ṣaḥīḥ al-Bukhārī, Kitāb 55, Bābs 8-10. Re; 4.11 (Belal Abo-Alabbas)

Al-Qurtubī, al-Jāmiʿ lil-Aḥkām (Beirut: Dār al-Kutub al-ʿIlimyya), vol.5, p.168f – re:Q4.34 9 (Karen Bauer)

Aḥmad b. Ismāʿīl al-Jazāʾirī (d.1151/1738-9), Qalāʾid al-Durar fī bayān aḥkām al-Qurʿān bil-athar (Qum: Maktabat al-Nashr al-Islāmī, 1332AH), v.2, p.368f; re: Q2.283 (Alex Hainy-Khaleeli)

Al-Shaykh al-Ṣadūq Ibn Bābawayh, Man Lā Yaḥduruhu al-faqīh (Beirut: Muʾassasat al-aʿlamī, 1406/1986), v.3, p.299f. Concerning mutʿa, citing Q24.3; 66.3. (George Warner)

Participants: Belal Abo-Alabbas, Mustafa Baig, Karen Bauer, Rob Gleave, Paul Gledhill, Alex Hainy-Khaleeli, Robert Hoyland, Jewel Jalil, Zarangez Karmova, Tayyeb Mimouni, Hadi Rizvi and George Warner.

13-14 MARCH 2017: Uṣūl texts workshop: Texts on Khabar al-Wāḥid

In this workshop, we read texts relating to the authoritativeness or probative force of isolated traditions (ḥujjiya khabar al-wāḥid), looking particularly at epistemological issues. Broadly speaking, many of the assumptions of the disputes around khabar al-wāḥid were shared between the traditions examined in the workshop.

Texts examined:

Ibn Ḥazm, al-Iḥkām, p.104-119 (Tariq Al-Timimi)

Al-Ghazālī, al-Mustaṣfā, p.219-228 (Ziad Bou Akl

Al-Tūnī, al-Wāfiyya, p.2-11 (Mehrdad Alipour)

Al-Muẓaffar, Uṣūl al-fiqh, p.79-82 (Hashim Bata)

Participants: Najah Ahmed, Omar Anchassi, Tariq Al-Timimi, Mustafa Baig, Hashim Bata, Alireza Bhojani, Ziad Bou Akl, Rob Gleave, Tayyeb Mimouni and Abdullah Sliti.

30-31 JANUARY 2017: Ḥadīth and Fiqh Texts

How law is derived from the hadith corpus is intimately linked to the development of particular conception of Sunna. The legal rules found in hadith reports whether ascribed to the Prophet, early authorities or the Shīʿī Imams are subject to differing treatments across the traditions. In this workshop we compared the mechanisms of how fiqh is derived from hadith, and the status of hadith as a legal source in the selected texts.

Texts examined:

al-Tahāwī, Sharḥ mushkil al-Āthār (Azaher Miah)

al-Zuhrī, Mukhtaṣar (introduction) (Paul Gledhill)

Imāmī Khums traditions (Ed Hayes)

Shīʿī writers on the adhān (Kumail Rajani)

Participants: Belal Abo-Alabbas, Tariq Al-Timimi, Omar Anchassi, Mustafa Baig, Rob Gleave, Paul Gledhill, Wissam Halawi, Ed Hayes, Jewel Jalil, Zarangez Karimova, Tayyeb Mimouni, Kumail Rajani and Abdullah Sliti.

14-15 November 2016: Uṣūl texts workshop: Texts on Ijmāʿ

The doctrine of ijmāʿ represents one of the major points of difference between Sunni and Shīʿī legal theorists. In this workshop, we examined the justifications for the doctrine of consensus in the two traditions, and how some scholars have proposed theories which aim to create common ground between the two traditions.

Texts examined:

Bāqir al-Ṣadr, Durūs fi ʿilm al-uṣūl, v.3, 158-165 (Alireza Bhojani)

Shāshī, Uṣūl al-Shāshī, 208-212 (Mansur Ali)

Ibn Qudāma, Rawḍat al-Naẓar, 160-163 (Abdullah Sliti)

Taftazānī, al-Talwīh ʿalā al-Tanqīh, v.2, 116-122. (Najah Ahmed)

Participants: Najah Ahmed, Mansur Ali, Omar Anchassi, Mustafa Baig, Alireza Bhojani, Rob Gleave, Tayyeb Mimouni, Abdullah Sliti and Tariq Al-Timimi.

Slot for giving zakat at the Zaouia Moulay Idriss II in Fez, Morocco

Naskh calligraphy

The declaration of Shi’ism as the state religion of Iran by Shah Ismail -Safavids dynasty 

The first Sura Al-Fātiha from a Qur’an manuscript by Hattat Aziz Efendi

Qur’an cover by Crystallina

Yunus-Emre-Brunnen, in Wien-Vienna, Austria. Quran inscription, Arabic calligraphy in Naskh style, as applied art in architecture.

Hadith books

Tilings of a Hadith on a Wall at Nishapur by Jamal Nazareth

Scallop shell inscribed with verses from the Qur’an in Nasta’aliq, Naskh, and Kufic scripts, Hindustan or Iran, first half of 17th century AD, mother of pearl – Aga Khan Museum – Toronto, Canada

Naskh calligraphy artwork, Iran – 1829