Journal of Arabic and Islamic

Studies

CONTENTS

Volume IV, 2001-2002

Edited by Joseph Norment Bell with Agostino Cilardo and Stefan Leder


 

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Ramzi Baalbaki. Ilhaq as a Morphological Tool in Arabic Grammar. Pp. 1-26. HTML Unicode version.

Abstract: The Arab grammarians differentiate between the ziyada (augment) that introduces an element of meaning and the ziyada that appends (yulhiq) one morphological form to another. Having realized the potential of the concept of ilhaq (appending) as an analytical tool in morphology, the grammarians divided appended words into several types according to the number of the radicals in their roots and the type of ziyada that is involved, and tried to justify forms and patterns with reference to a set of detailed rules which they elaborately describe. This paper deals with the issues the grammarians tackle in their study of ilhaq, such as its purpose, the possibility of analogically extending its examples, and the inapplicability of idgham (gemination) to its patterns. It also examines how the grammarians use ilhaq to reduce considerably the number of morphological patterns that form a closed system, to explain away anomalous and rare patterns, and thus to limit deviation from the norm (qiyas) and to test the validity of a host of morphological issues.

Carlo De Angelo. Le problematiche socio-giuridiche connesse all'immigrazione islamica in Europa con particolare riguardo alla situazione italiana. Pp. 27-48. HTML Unicode version.

Abstract: This study deals with the migration flows from Islamic countries, or countries with large Islamic populations, to Europe. Particular attention is paid to the factors that explain these flows from the 1950s to the 1970s. After the restrictive policies or closure introduced in the 1970s, migration shows a clear trend towards permanent settling and takes on new and more defined characteristics. The social-juridical consequences related to these transformations are examined here. The second part of the study describes differences between the Italian and the more general European situation. Sizeable Islamic presence in Italy is a relatively new phenomenon, dating back largely to the 1980s. Unlike elsewhere in Europe, Islam has established itself very rapidly. The whole typology of Islamic institutionalized presence characteristic of other European countries is already visible. As elsewhere, the Islamic community—particularly through the action of the UCOII, the most representative umbrella organization—is trying to reach an intesa (agreement) with the government to obtain a status comparable with that of other religious minorities. However, as of this writing, the process has not yet officially begun. This can be ascribed in particular to the problem of determining which Islamic body should be taken as the legitimate representative of the Muslim communities. With reference to other juridical problems (mosques, ­halal food, cemeteries, ­hijab, marriage, etc.) the paper defends the position that a sustainable immigration policy should be able to reflect the interests of both immigrants and native inhabitants. The most effective strategy, it would seem, can be worked out within a cross-cultural perspective that recognizes that confrontation and dialogue are possible, indeed necessary, among cultures sharing a common core of values and principles, that is to say, a common acceptance of universal human rights.

Arno Schmitt. Liwat im Fiqh: Männliche Homosexualität? (Adobe Acrobat 6.0 PDF file, 413 kB, pp. 49-110). There are a number of changes from the earlier version posted, some of which may affect pagination (31.03.05).  HTML version to be posted later.

Abstract: Despite widespread acceptance by (male) society, Islamic jurisprudence condemns anal intercourse—and this is the meaning of liwat, not “homosexuality,” or “(male) homosexual behaviour”. The Arab conquest had changed neither the modes of production nor the patriarchal order or sexual mores of Egypt, Syria, Iraq and Iran. In Hellenistic societies the main gender division runs not between male and female, and hetero- and homosexual, but rather between penetrator and penetratable (women, boys, slaves, Jews, eunuchs and dancers alike). To penetrate was normal male desire, but to suffer or to allow penetration was shameful, and to enjoy it worse. Islamic law, on the other hand, prescribes the death penalty for extramarital intercourse—with male or female and whether as penetrator or penetrated. Considering the sources of Islamic law, this paper reasons that neither the Holy Book nor the most authentic and earliest apostolic sayings impose a death sentence for sodomy in this life. But Isma'ilis, Zaidis, most Ja'faris and Shafi'is and many Hanbalites punish liwat with the penalty for zina; the Malikis and some Hanbalis and Shafi'is decree the death penalty even for the ghayr muhsan. Leaving the ghulat aside, who, if one is to believe Imami heresiographies, did allow liwat, some viewing it as a way to transmit holiness, only the rather marginal Zahiriya and most Hanafites argue that there is no hadd—they impose only ta'zir. Although in the classical period some Hanafis believed it to be allowed in paradise, later the Hanafiya narrowed the gap with the other madhahib, either by imposing hadd az-zina, or by removing all constraints from ta'zir. As to sodomizing one’s slaves, only the Hanbalis were unambiguous in their condemnation. The solution to the tension between societal attitude and the shari'a is found in strict requirements of evidence: together with general rules of moral conduct, the procedural law makes the execution of the death penalty almost impossible—as long as the sinful and shameful acts take place in private and are denied by the perpetrators.

Seyed Hossein Serajzadeh. Islam and Crime: The Moral Community of Muslims. Pp. 111-31. HTML Unicode version.

Abstract: International crime statistics indicate that in Islamic countries crime rates are lower than in other countries. This feature of Islamic countries is most often explained by two factors: a) the relatively low level of development, which has a positive effect on crime rates, and b) the strictness of Islamic penal law. Providing some evidence, this article maintains that the first factor fails to explain properly the difference in the crime rates of Islamic and non-Islamic countries at a similar level of development. It also argues that the second explanation is a reductionist one. Following a Weberian approach, the article develops the argument that the content and structure of Islamic belief and practice is the dominant shared element among Islamic countries. It has given rise to a particular socio-cultural structure among Muslims, one of the impacts of which has been the low crime rate. Islamic beliefs and practice, therefore, are discussed as the main explanatory factor for the low crime rate in Islamic countries. (Keywords: religion, crime, development, Islam, Shari’a, Islamic law, Muslim attitudes.)

Leif Ole Manger. Religion, Identities, and Politics: Defining Muslim Discourses in the Nuba Mountains of the Sudan Pp. 132-52.
HTML Unicode version.

 

Abstract: The author discusses the increased importance of Islam in religious and social life in the Sudan, exemplified by a discussion of the interplay between an indigenous, non-Arab, non-Islamized Sudanese people, the Lafofa Nuba, and their interaction with the Arab and Islamic traditions of Sudanese society at large. An understanding of this interaction will require types of analysis that deal with issues of belief as well as broader issues of identity management. People do not take over Islam as one unified system and in one process of conversion; rather they take up Muslim customs and practices that become symbols of such a conversion. The process of conversion must therefore be linked to the socio-economic and political status of the people involved. The author points out that theoretical contributions by Talal Asad on Islam as a “discursive tradition” and Robert Launay on Muslim communities as “moral communities” provide interesting avenues for exploring this complexity.
 


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