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Vol 23 No 5 May/June 2018

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Shari'a in the West

Edited by: Rex Ahdar, Nicholas Aroney

ISBN13: 9780199582914
Published: December 2010
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Country of Publication: UK
Format: Hardback
Price: £35.49

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In February 2008, the Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr Rowan Williams, delivered a public lecture in which he stated that it "seem[ed] unavoidable" that certain aspects of Islamic law (Shari'a) would be recognized and incorporated into British law.

The comments provoked outrage from sections of the public who viewed any recognition of Shari'a law in Britain with alarm. In July 2008 Lord Phillips, Lord Chief Justice of England and Wales, weighed into the fray. He praised the Archbishop's speech and gave qualified support for Shari'a principles to govern certain family and civil disputes.

Responding to the polarised debate that followed these lectures, this is a collection of short essays written by distinguished and prominent scholars addressing the question of the accommodation of Shari'a within the legal systems of the liberal-democratic West. The matters raised in the two 2008 lectures provide a springboard for lively discussion, criticism and debate on both the specific question of religious/cultural accommodation by the law and the wider issues of multiculturalism, equality before the law and the desirability of parallel jurisdictions for particular faith communities.

Leading scholars from a range of countries and academic disciplines, and representing different political viewpoints and faith traditions explore the complex issues surrounding the legal recognition of religious faith in a multicultural society.

The volume aims to stimulate further thought on a complex issue, and to open up new pathways for policymakers and civil society institutions grappling with the relationship between Shari'a and Western legal systems.

Islamic Law
1: Rex Ahdar and Nicholas Aroney: Shari'a in the West: An Introduction
2: John Milbank: The Archbishop, the Law and the People of Britain
3: Tariq Modood: Multicultural Citizenship and the Anti-Shari'a Storm
4: Jeremy Waldron: The Rule of Law, Legal Complexity and Shari'a Courts in a Multicultural Society
5: Ayelet Shachar: Entangled: State, Religion, and the Family
6: Bishop Michael Nazir-Ali: The Dar ul-Islam and the Dhimma: Prospects for the West?
7: Abdullah Saeed: Recognition of Shari'a in Australia? Reflections on the Nature of the Debate
8: Christopher Eberle: Islamic convictions in Liberal Politics
9: John Milbank: Shari'a: Some thoughts after Christendom
10: Christine Schirrmacher: Human Rights, Women's Rights, Religious Rights and Shari'a
11: John Witte Jr: The Frontiers of Marital Pluralism
12: Jean-François Gaudreault-Desbiens: Shari'a, Federalism and Legal Transplants
13: James Skillen: Shari'a and Pluralism
14: J. Budziszewski: Natural Law, Democracy and Shari'a
15: Sophie van Bijsterveld: Muslims and the Shari'a Question in the Netherlands
16: John Finnis: Reflections on Shari'a in the West
17: Afterword
Further Reading
Rowan Williams: Appendix: Civil and Religious Law in England: a Religious Perspective
Lord Phillips: Appendix: Equality Before the Law