Intercultural Trade, Commercial Litigation, and Legal Pluralism
The book series
Mediterranean Reconfigurations is devoted to the analyses of historical change in the Mediterranean over a long period (15th - 19th centuries), challenging totalizing narratives that “Westernize” Mediterranean history as having led naturally to European domination in the 19th and 20th centuries. In reality, the encounters of Muslim, Jewish, Armenian and Protestant merchants and sailors with legal customs and judicial practices different from their own gave rise to legal and cultural creativity throughout the Mediterranean. Through the prism of commercial litigation, the series thus offers a more accurate and deeper understanding of the practices of intercultural trade, in a context profoundly shaped by legal pluralism and multiple and overlapping spaces of jurisdiction. Comparative case studies offer empirically-based indicators for both regional and more general processes, here called "Mediterranean reconfigurations", e.g. the changing interplay and positioning of individual and institutional actors on different levels in a variety of commercial and legal contexts.
La pratique du droit musulman est généralement considérée comme un phénomène urbain. À partir d’une analyse de recueils de fatwas inédits et d’autres manuscrits arabes provenant des oasis du Grand Touat (Sud algérien),
Droit musulman et société au Sahara prémoderne remet en question cette vision des choses. L’ouvrage explore la diffusion d’institutions juridiques islamiques dans la région entre le XVIIe et le XIXe siècles, ainsi que l’interaction entre communautés villageoises et juristes musulmans. Pour sonder ce processus, Ismail Warscheid adopte une approche dialectique : il reconstitue les modalités de l’application de la charia par les cadis et muftis locaux et s’interroge sur les usages que les populations oasiennes font des tribunaux islamiques, de l’écriture notariale et de la consultation juridique.
Pre-modern Islamic legal practice is most often considered an essentially urban phenomenon. Relying on unedited fatwa collections and other Arabic manuscripts from the oasis of Tuwāt in southern Algeria,
Droit musulman et société au Sahara prémoderne challenges this vision. The book explores the spread of Islamic legal institutions in the region between the seventeenth and the nineteenth centuries, and the interaction between village communities and Muslim jurists. Ismail Warscheid investigates this process from a dialectical perspective: how were
sharʿī norms applied by local qadis and muftis, and how did local populations made use of court litigation, notarial certification, and legal consultation?
Politics of Honor, Başak Tuğ examines moral and gender order through the glance of legal litigations and petitions in mid-eighteenth century Anatolia. By juxtaposing the Anatolian petitionary registers, subjects’ petitions, and Ankara and Bursa court records, she analyzes the institutional framework of legal scrutiny of sexual order. Through a revisionist interpretation, Tuğ demonstrates that a more bureaucratized system of petitioning, a farther hierarchically organized judicial review mechanism, and a more centrally organized penal system of the mid-eighteenth century reinforced the existing mechanisms of social surveillance by the community and the co-existing “discretionary authority” of the Ottoman state over sexual crimes to overcome imperial anxieties about provincial “disorder”.