Shattering Tradition explores some of the ways in which the legal plurality of Islamic law, customary law and state law is dealt with in the societies of the Islamic Mediterranean. In Muslim societies religion and law are known to be intimately linked. While scholarly attention has been traditionally focused on Islamic law, all Muslim states have engaged in secular legislation and codification concentrating on customary law - which has hitherto been neglected. This groundbreaking series of empirical case studies investigates the varying ways in which different forms of law interrelate and it analyses how the tensions between them are resolved in local settings. Walter Dostal and Wolfgang Kraus have brought together contributions that combine an interdisciplinary approach with a strong grounding in social anthropology that deals with different parts of the Islamic Mediterranean in the widest sense. They discuss diverse topics such as: codification processes in the Ottoman Empire from the 15th century onwards; urban market organisation and its historical evolution; the principles of tribal customary law in the southern Hijaz; traditional legal practice and its transformations under colonial rule in a Moroccan Berber tribe; conflict resolution in the silver market of Sana'a and the mediating role of saints in the Hadramaut. Shattering Tradition makes vital reading to all those interested in the social anthropology of the Middle East and the wider study of law throughout the Islamic Mediterranean.
Custom, Law and the Individual in the Muslim Mediterranean