Synopses & Reviews
Mohammad Abed al-Jabri is one of the most influential political philosophers in the contemporary Middle East. A critical rationalist in the tradition of Avincenna and Averroes, he emphasizes the distinctive political and cultural heritage of the Arab world whilst rejecting the philosophical discourses that have been used to obscure its democratic deficit. This volume introduces an English-language audience for the first time to writings that have had a major impact on Arab political thought. Wide-ranging in scope yet focused in detail, these essays interrogate concepts such as democracy, law, and human rights, looking at how they have been applied in the history of the Arab world, and show that they are determined by political and social context, not by Islamic doctrine. Jabri argues that in order to develop democratic societies in which human rights are respected, the Arab world cannot simply rely on old texts and traditions. Nor can it import democratic models from the West. Instead, he says, a new tradition will have to be forged by today's Arabs themselves, on their own terms.
About the Author
Mohammad Abed-al Jabri is Professor of Philosophy at the Mohammed V University in Rabat, Morocco. He was one of the authors of the infuential 2002 Arab Human Development Report.
Table of Contents
PART I: QUESTION OF RELIGION AND THE STATE
1. Religion and the State in Traditional Authority
2. Execution of Judgments
4. The Caliphate and the Balance of Power
5. The Caliphate: Constitutional Flaws
6. The Ideology of Power and Islamic Ethics
7. II- Religion and State in the Renaissance Referential Authority
8. The Necessity of Avoiding Provincial Problems
9. Sectarianism and Democracy
10. Democracy and Rationality: Substitute for 'Secularism'
11. Religion, Politics, and Civil War
PART II: THE QUESTION OF APPLYING SHARI'AH
12. Awakening and Innovation
13. Traditionalism (salafiyyah)...or the Historical Experience of the Nation?
14. Extremism...Right and Left
15. Extremism in Creed and Shari'ah
16. Towards a New Ijtihad
17. The Rationality of Shari'ah Judgments
18. Judgments and Dependence
19. Every Age has its Own Needs
20. Avoid Penalty by Benefit of Doubt
21. On the 'Full Application of Shari'ah