A Modern Approach to Islam

Asaf A. A. Fyzee, Oxford University Press, 2008, Second Edition, xxxiv, 106 p, ISBN : 0195693019, $22.00 (Includes free airmail shipping)

Contents: Preface. Introduction/Saiyid Hamid. 1. The essence of Islam. 2. Law and religion in Islam. 3. Islamic law and theology in India. 4. The reinterpretation of Islam. Koran index. Name index. Subject index.

"This classic work, written by one of the greatest modern scholars of Islamic law, focuses on the need for a reinterpretation of Islamic jurisprudence and for a rediscovery of its original philosophy.

Fyzee presents a fresh critique of Islam based on historical, scientific, and comparative principles. He contends that rules of law can be modified in modern times for the purpose of healthy reforms without compromising on the essential spirit of Islam. Beginning with a brief but meaningful survey of Indian, Arabic, and Western scholarship on Islamic law and philosophy, he goes on to propose six principles for the reinterpretation of Islam. He explains his belief that in the context of law, 'the first task is to separate logically the dogmas and doctrines of religion from the principles and rules of law.

In an introduction written especially for this edition, Saiyid Hamid widens the scope of the discussion and shows the book's significance for today's world where misunderstandings about Islam abound. Drawing from the works of contemporary scholars, as well as of those from earlier periods, he brings to light essential concepts in Islamic thought--reason, the spirit of inquiry, social justice, mercy, non-aggression, and individual responsibility.

Thought-provoking, accessible, and relevant, this book will interest all those keen to understand Islam and its role in current day society. Students and scholars of Islamic law and philosophy, family law, jurisprudence, sociology, and gender studies will find it useful." (jacket)

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