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date: 16 May 2021

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter begins by reviewing two earlier historiographies of Islamic family law to illustrate the breadth and depth of the field and proceeds to examine the literature. The first section focuses on doctrinal scholarship on different substantive areas of law. The second considers the literature that deals with the different loci of authority to interpret, legislate, and enforce Islamic family law, or parts of it. The third section considers literature that engages with the implications of the increasingly unsettled authority of apparently agreed upon substance of Islamic family law, and the authority to say what it is. This growing body of scholarship engages with what Islamic family law could/should/might be and includes purposively engaged scholarship as well as examinations of activist alliances and the views of wider publics questioned about what they expect it to be—that is, what problems they expect this law to resolve.

Keywords: Family law, ahwal shakhsiyya, personal status law, marriage, divorce, gender

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