Research Handbook on Islamic Law and Society
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Research Handbook on Islamic Law and Society

Edited by Nadirsyah Hosen

The Research Handbook on Islamic Law and Society provides an examination of the role of Islamic law as it applies in Muslim and non-Muslim societies through legislation, fatwa, court cases, sermons, media, or scholarly debate. It illuminates the intersection of social, political, economic and cultural factors that inform Islamic Law across a number of jurisdictions. Chapters evaluate when and how actors and institutions have turned to Islamic law to address problems faced by societies in Muslim and, in some cases, Western states.
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Chapter 18: Khutbahs and fatwas in colonial Indonesia and Malaya

Muhamad Ali


This chapter examines sermons (khutbah) and edicts (fatwa), and the extent to which colonial contexts shaped their characteristics and development in colonial Indonesia, particularly in South Sulawesi, and in Malaysia, notably Kelantan. The chapter provides an analysis of how various ulama (clergy) constructed sermons and edicts, what sources and languages they used, and what problems and issues they faced. In such an analysis, the flexibility of religious knowledge and the contending interpretations of the religious texts reveal some of the tensions, as well as the compromises, which characterise the production of such knowledge.

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