The Four Schools: A History of Islamic Law and the Madhhabs (USL 101)

Course Description

In this course the students will trace the development of Islamic Law from the era of the Prophet ﷺ through the early generations until the emergence of the Four Schools of Sunni Jurisprudence. Class discussion will include:

  • Fiqh During the Era of the Prophet ﷺ
  • Fiqh During the Era of the Companions
  • Fiqh During the Era of the Successors
  • The Life & Times of Imam Abū Ḥanīfa
  • The Life & Times of Imam Mālik
  • The Life & Times of Imam Shāfiʿī
  • The Life & Times of Imam Aḥmad
  • Causes of Disagreement Among Scholars
  • Ijtihād & Taqlīd in Islamic Law

Course Objectives

  1. To understand the value of the Four Schools in Sunni Islam
  2. To appreciate the existence of scholarly disagreement

Textbooks

  1. Sayis, Muhammad Ali, History of Islamic Jurisprudence. DKI.
  2. Abu Zahra, Muhammad. The Four Imams. Dar al-Taqwa.

In this course the students will trace the development of Islamic Law from the era of the Prophet ﷺ through the early generations until the emergence of the Four Schools of Sunni Jurisprudence. Class discussion will include:

  • Fiqh During the Era of the Prophet ﷺ
  • Fiqh During the Era of the Companions
  • Fiqh During the Era of the Successors
  • The Life & Times of Imam Abū Ḥanīfa
  • The Life & Times of Imam Mālik
  • The Life & Times of Imam Shāfiʿī
  • The Life & Times of Imam Aḥmad
  • Causes of Disagreement Among Scholars
  • Ijtihād & Taqlīd in Islamic Law
  1. To understand the value of the Four Schools in Sunni Islam
  2. To appreciate the existence of scholarly disagreement
  1. Sayis, Muhammad Ali, History of Islamic Jurisprudence. DKI.
  2. Abu Zahra, Muhammad. The Four Imams. Dar al-Taqwa.