Debating the Renewal of Islamic Jurisprudence (Tajdid al-Fiqh): Yusuf al-Qaradawi, his Interlocutors, and the Articulation, Transmission and Reconstruction of the Fiqh Tradition in the Qatar-Context

  • David Warren

Student thesis: Phd


This thesis offers an interpretation of the Qatar-based Egyptian Shaykh Yusuf al-Qaradawi's contribution to "tajdid al-fiqh," the "renewal" of the Islamic fiqh tradition. In the wake of the transformations wrought on the fiqh tradition during the colonial period, it is the "modern project" (to borrow Talal Asad's term) for tajdid al-fiqh instigated by Muhammad 'Abduh and Rashid Rida that this thesis uses to enter the discussion. Al-Qaradawi lays claim to their legacy, and this thesis is particularly concerned with the engagement between himself and his interlocutors in the unusual context of Qatar. These "translocal" networks facilitate al-Qaradawi's involvement in debates in other contexts in the region, particularly in Egypt and the wider Arabian Peninsula. Each of this thesis's thematic chapters will make a different case for understanding al-Qaradawi's borrowing, reconstructing, reviving or transforming certain concepts and ideas. In so doing it will show that al-Qaradawi, as representative of the contemporary ʿulamaʾ as a whole, is not part of a scholar-class that have been either marginalized or entirely co-optated by the state. Instead, they are a group of scholars that have utilized new media technologies and other supportive networks to continually promote themselves in the Arab public sphere, as they sought to adapt their tradition to the Middle East region's new context, debates and conditions.
Date of Award1 Aug 2015
Original languageEnglish
Awarding Institution
  • The University of Manchester
SupervisorRonald Buckley (Supervisor) & Andreas Christmann (Supervisor)


  • Qatar
  • Muslim Brotherhood
  • Fiqh
  • al-Qaradawi, Yusuf
  • Sharia

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