Northwestern Events Calendar


Anver Emon: Religious Pluralism and Islamic Law: Tolerance and its Limits

When: Thursday, April 28, 2016
12:00 PM - 1:30 PM CT

Where: Scott Hall, Ripton Room, 601 University Place, Evanston, IL 60208 map it

Audience: Faculty/Staff - Student - Public - Post Docs/Docs - Graduate Students

Contact: Gina Giliberti  

Group: Global Politics and Religion Research Group

Category: Academic


In policy arenas on security and violent extremism, Islam is often the paradigmatic ideology or tradition against which states must bolster themselves. This paradigmatic rendering of Islam has a history that reaches into a longer, more poignant historiography on religious difference and pluralism in the Islamic historical tradition. This rendering of Islam is premised on a set of questions about whether Islam is a tolerant faith, whether Islamic law upholds an ethic of tolerance, and whether those who adhere to Islamic law are (or can be) tolerant. The questions and the historiography they rely upon allow us a chance to question the operative assumptions of “tolerance-talk” and how those assumptions operate to cast the Islamic outside the realm tolerant and tolerated. By examining Islamic legal history, and parochializing the paradigmatic rendering of Islam, the talk will examine the limits of tolerance.

Anver M. Emon is a leading scholar of Islamic law who works across multiple legal traditions in both his research and teaching, and brings that scholarly grounding to his consultations for governments, NGOs and legal advocacy groups around the world.

Dr. Emon's research focuses on premodern and modern Islamic legal history and theory; premodern modes of governance and adjudication; and the role of Shari'a both inside and outside the Muslim world. His general academic interests include topics in law and religion; legal history; and legal philosophy. He teaches torts, constitutional law, and statutory interpretation, and offers specialized seminars on Islamic legal history, gender and Islamic law, and law and religion. The recipient of numerous research grants, he was named as a 2014 Guggenheim Fellow in the field of law.

In addition to publishing numerous articles, Emon is the author of Islamic Natural Law Theories (Oxford University Press, 2010), and Religious Pluralism and Islamic Law: Dhimmis and Others in the Empire of Law (Oxford University Press, 2012), as well as the co-editor of Islamic Law and International Human Rights Law: Searching for Common Ground? (Oxford University Press, 2012). He is the founding editor of Middle East Law and Governance: An Interdisciplinary Journal, and series editor of the Oxford Islamic Legal Studies Series.

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