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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:The Legal Methodology of the Mahdi of Sudan, 1881-1885: Issues in Marriage and Divorce
Author:Layish, AharonISNI
Periodical:Sudanic Africa
Geographic term:Sudan
Islamic law
marriage law
History and Exploration
Law, Human Rights and Violence
Women's Issues
Peoples of Africa (Ethnic Groups)
Law, Legal Issues, and Human Rights
Cultural Roles
Marital Relations and Nuptiality
Religion and Witchcraft
External link:https://www.jstor.org/stable/25653297
Abstract:Mu.hammad A.hmad b. 'Abd Allah (Mu.hammad al-Mahdi) headed a religious-political movement in the Sudan for the revival and reform of Islam (the Mahdiyya) with a view to restoring an Islamic theocracy. The author describes and analyses, from the standpoint of the Shari'a, the Mahdi's legal methodology issued from the time of his manifestation in 1881 until his death in 1885, its sources of inspiration as well as its actual application, focusing primarily on issues pertaining to divorce and polygamy. After outlining the background of the Mahdi's 'fatwa' (legal opinion), which was intended to solve problems created during the initial stages of the expansion and consolidation of the Mahdist movement, the author presents the text of the 'fatwa' together with an English translation. The 'fatwa' is an instructive example of the adaptation of the Shari'a to the Mahdi's requirements. It illustrates the Mahdi's unique style of deviating from positive Islamic law and the classical theory of the jurisprudence in an effort to replace them with new methodological elements, the most important of which is Prophetic inspiration, promoted here to the status of a source of law in its own right, while displacing analogical reasoning ('qiyas') from the textual sources. Notes, ref.