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The Qurʿanic Law of Inheritance

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The Sunnī law of inheritance relies on a particular interpretation of the Qurʿanic inheritance verses. Even though Shīʾī inheritance law is strikingly different from Sunnī law, the Sunnī interpretation of the Qurʿanic texts has rarely been questioned. In this essay I propose a new interpretation of the relevant texts and examine the system of inheritance that this interpretation seems to imply. The system proposed is closer to Shīʾī than to Sunnī law, but even Shīʾī law shows the influence of characteristically Sunnī interpretations of the Qur'ān.

Affiliations: 1: University of St Andrews


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