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This Handbook is a detailed reference source comprising of original articles covering the origins, history, theory and practice of Islamic law. Previous publications on this topic have approached Islamic law from practically every disciplinary and pedagogical perspective (philology, history, sociology, anthropology etc.) except that of the study of law. The real challenge is that there are a number of historical and doctrinal aspects of Islamic jurisprudence that cannot be properly evaluated unless the functions and processes of legal cultures and the patterns of legal thought are also taken into account.
This comparative perspective has a direct bearing on the structure and selected topics of this book: