Islamic Banking and Interest

A Study of the Prohibition of Riba and its Contemporary Interpretation


This important book critically examines the traditional interpretation of riba (translated as usury of interest) and the attempts of modern Islamic banks to put that interpretation into practice. The first part of the book examines the prohibition and interpretation of riba in Islam, as well as the controversies surrounding it. The second part examines the alternatives to interest-based financing utilised in Islamic banking and the problems associated with such alternatives with particular focus on mudaraba, musharaka and marabaha. The book questions the legalistic approach to the interpretation of riba and argues for a moral understanding of the issue in the light of the authoritative texts of Islam and the lessons learnt from the Islamic banking experiment.

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Abdullah Saeed, Ph.D. (1992) in Islamic Studies, University of Melbourne, is Head of the Arabic and Islamic Studies program at the University of Melbourne.
'...we have this fascinating and entertaining collection of portraits from 'bbāsid life made available in English...'
David Thomas, Islam & Christian-Muslim Relations, 1999.
'…not only a very important contribution to the field of Islamic law, but is also an important contribution to the ongoing discussion about Islam and islamization.'
N. Aby Zayd, Bibliotheca Orientalis, 2000.
All those interested in Islamic banking, finance, economics, law and society as well as modern Islamic thought.
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