Syllabus: Islamic Jurisprudence

UCLA, School of Law

This course introduces the field of Islamic law. Islamic law is one of the oldest and most significant legal systems in the contemporary age, and this course is designed to give students a firm grounding in its principles, concepts, and doctrines. We will study the history, theory, and the role of Islamic law in the contemporary age. No previous familiarity with the field is necessary, and there are no course prerequisites. All readings are in English. The course will be divided into two main parts: the first will deal with Islamic law in the classical context, while the second will examine the role of Islamic law in the contemporary age. The first half of the course is oriented towards the historical legacy and theoretical framework of the Islamic legal tradition with a special emphasis on the development of the various schools of law. In the second half, we will study the challenges of modernity and Islamic law in the contemporary age, and will examine issues related to Islamic public international law, human rights, women and gender, and violence.

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