Divine Covenant - Science and Concepts of Natural Law in the Qur’an and Islamic Disciplines - Ulrika Mårtensson

Divine Covenant - Science and Concepts of Natural Law in the Qur’an and Islamic Disciplines - Ulrika Mårtensson

Institutional Practices

Divine Covenant - Science and Concepts of Natural Law in the Qur’an and Islamic Disciplines - Ulrika Mårtensson

Ulrika Mårtensson [+-]
The Norwegian University of Science and Technology
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Ulrika Mårtensson is Professor in the Department of Philosophy and Religious Studies at The Norwegian University of Science and Technology. She researches early Islamic history and historiography, focusing on how religious symbols express social contract theories and legal-economic issues. She is also doing research on the Qur'an, employing both historical and exegetical-legal perspectives and comparing early Islamic approaches to the Qur'an with contemporary research. Other research interests concern Islam as it is developing in the institutional contexts and public spheres of the Nordic welfare states; and 'political Islam'.

Description

Chapter 5 develops another, closely related aspect of Covenant identified in the preceding chapter, namely its reference to a constitution i.e. the division of power and function between state/ruler and judiciary. Consequently, and in line with de Certeau’s approach, in the first part of the chapter I reconstruct a political economy, an administrative institutional order, and a social contract theory as context for the Qurʾānic Covenant, based on current historical research and the Prophet’s Biography. The reconstruction highlights the importance of land as the main form of wealth, the organising principle of the political economy and administration, the source of tax income for the state and material sustenance for all people. Hence, Covenant as signifying rights-based law, constitutional rule, and social contract, refers also to the concrete issues of land ownership and land tax. Based on some historical research, I also propose that the Prophet’s rule and early Islamic law converged with agricultural developments, and introduced new forms of sharecropping contracts, which granted peasants new property rights to land and protected inheritance. In the second part of the chapter, I proceed from the Prophet’s time to sketch the main Islamic societal institutions and historical developments and topics related to constitutional rule, from the early Caliphate to the 900s/1500s. Throughout the chapter, I also analyse Qurʾānic concepts with reference to these topics, following the logic that Qurʾānic knowledge extends into the disciplines.

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Citation

Mårtensson, Ulrika. Institutional Practices. Divine Covenant - Science and Concepts of Natural Law in the Qur’an and Islamic Disciplines. Equinox eBooks Publishing, United Kingdom. p. 120-177 Jun 2022. ISBN 9781781791714. https://www.equinoxpub.com/home/view-chapter/?id=23809. Date accessed: 12 Aug 2022 doi: 10.1558/equinox.23809. Jun 2022

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