Codification was a founding feature of Ottoman legal reform from the 1840s until the demise of the empire. This article seeks to situate the Ottoman project of codification in the context of the global codification momentum, which set the ground for a transnational common imagination of the law during the “long nineteenth century”. When analyzed from the perspective of glocalization, Ottoman codes, much like codes elsewhere, stand out as essential signifiers of modernity in the socio-legal sphere.
AyoubSamySchullKent F.Safa SaraçoğluM.ZensRobertThe Mecelle, Sharia, and the Ottoman State: Fashioning and Refashioning of Islamic Law in the Nineteenth and Twentieth CenturiesLaw and Legality in the Ottoman Empire and Republic of Turkey2016Bloomington. IndianapolisIndiana University Press129149
CanaleDamianoCanaleDamianoGrossiPaoloHofmanHassoThe Many Faces of the Codification of Law in Modern Continental EuropeA History of the Philosophy of Law in the Civil Law World, 1600-19002005Dordrecht. New YorkSpringer135183
İslamoğluHuriİslamoǧluHuriPolitics of Administering Property: Law and Statistics in the 19th Century Ottoman EmpireConstituting Modernity: Private Property in the East and the West2004LondonI.B. Tauris276319
PetersRudolphAbun-NasrJamil M.SpellenbergUlrichWanitzekUlrikeThe Codification of Criminal Law in Nineteenth Century Egypt: Tradition or Modernization?Law, Society and National Identity in Africa1991HamburgBuske211225
ToprakZaferFrangoudakiAnnaKeyderCaglarFrom Plurality to Unity: Codification and Jurisprudence in the Late Ottoman EmpireWays to Modernity in Greece and Turkey: Encounters with Europe, 1850-19502007London and New YorkI.B. Tauris2639
W. Menski, Comparative Law in a Global Context: The Legal Systems of Asia and Africa (Cambridge and New York: Cambridge University Press, 2006): 493-593; J.W. Head and Y. Wang, Law Codes in Dynastic China: A Synopsis of Chinese Legal History in the Thirty Centuries from Zhou to Qing (Durham n.c.: Carolina Academic Press 2005).
C. Imber, The Ottoman Empire, 1300-1650: The Structure of Power (New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2002). As Baki Tezcan notes, “the basis of the legality of the kanun was custom.” See B. Tezcan, The Second Ottoman Empire: Political and Social Transformation in the Early Modern World (New York: Cambridge University Press, 2010): 49.
A. Watson, The Evolution of Law (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1985). On the Ottoman project of legal transplantation, see A. Rubin, “Legal Borrowing and its Impact on Ottoman Legal Culture in the Late Nineteenth Century.” Continuity and Change 22 (2007): 279-303.
See, for instance, A. Layish, “The Transformation of the Shari’a from Jurists’ Law to Statutory Law in the Contemporary Muslim World.”Die Welt des Islams44 (2004): 85-113. In a recent article, Samy Ayoub analyzes the Mecelle as “a response generated from within the Islamic legal tradition to the Tanzimat reforms and penetration of laws in Ottoman society.” See S. Ayoub, “The Mecelle, Sharia, and the Ottoman State: Fashioning and Refashioning of Islamic Law in the Nineteenth and Twentieth Centuries.” In Law and Legality in the Ottoman Empire and Republic of Turkey, ed. K.F. Schull, M.S. Saraçoğlu and R. Zens (Bloomington; Indianapolis: Indiana University Press, 2016): 129-49.