Jointly presented by Asia Research Institute, Faculty of Law, Faculty of Arts & Social Science, National University of Singapore and The Carnegie Corporation of New York, USA.
Over the past decade Muslim Southeast Asia has experienced a dynamic and multi-faceted Islamic religious revival, including significant legal developments in Indonesia, Malaysia and to a lesser extent in Singapore. In each of these countries, new statutory instruments have been issued which empower Islamic courts to apply Islamic law in an increasing number of legal disputes. Islamic law has also come to play an indirect role being cited in court cases as a source of rules to govern situations where statutes are silent or ambiguous. The ability of academics and policy makers to productively analyze trends in the Islamic sectors of contemporary Asian legal systems has been hampered by incomplete information about the institutions and individuals who are today implementing the new Islamic laws. While scholars have studied that Islamic political and social movements who have argued over the years for Islamisation the law and, to a lesser extent, the texts of the Islamic laws that were developed. However, scholars have spent very little time to date studying the judiciaries who are actually entrusted with the task of interpreting and applying Islamic law in state courts. Neither have they studied the lawyers who will mediate between judiciaries and the public at large. This is quite surprising for it is these judges and lawyers who will determine what Islamic law Islamic to citizens who are subject to such laws in contemporary Southeast Asia.
Developing a picture of changing Islamic legal education for legal professionals in the region is a necessary first step toward understanding how Islamic lawyers and Muslim judges view their own social roles and how Muslim judges formulate their decisions.
Some funding provided for by the Carnegie Corporation of New York and the University of Washington School of Law. The views of speakers represent their own views and not those of the Corporation and University.
A/Prof Michael Feener (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Asia Research Institute and Department of History, NUS
A/Prof Clark Lombardi
University of Washington School of Law, USA
Prof Mark Cammack
Southwestern Law School, USA
Miss Alyson Rozells
Asia Research Institute, National University of Singapore
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