Constructive Critics, Ḥadīth Literature, and the Articulation of Sunnī Islam

The Legacy of the Generation of Ibn Sa῾d, Ibn Ma῾īn, and Ibn Ḥanbal


Demonstrating the central role of third/ninth century ḥadīth scholars in the articulation of Sunnī Islam, this book bases its findings largely upon the analysis of multiple biographical dictionaries, such as al-Dhahabī’s Tadhkirat al-ḥuffāẓ, Ibn Saʿd’s Kitāb al-ṭabaqāt al-kabīr, and collections of the critical comments of Ibn Maʿīn and Ibn Ḥanbal.
Part I establishes conceptual and historical frameworks for the study of Sunnī ḥadīth scholarship.
Part II examines in detail the three foundational principles of Sunnī Islam: 1) the collective probity of the ṣaḥāba, 2) the discipline of ḥadīth-transmitter criticism, and 3) a historical vision of the authoritative channels by which ḥadīth traversed the two centuries between the life of the Prophet Muḥammad and the first major ḥadīth books.


EUR €175.00USD $234.00

Biographical Note

Scott C. Lucas, Ph.D. (2002) in Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations, University of Chicago, has served as a Visiting Assistant Professor of Religion at Mount Holyoke College (2002-3). This is his first major publication.

Review Quotes

' Lucas writes with clarity and amply demonstrates his mastery and passion for his subject…This indispensable book is essential reading for serious researchers in the area of Ḥadīth scholarship and criticism.' Aftab Ahmad Malik, The Muslim World Book Review, 2005.


All those interested in Islamic history and religion, in general, and scholars of ḥadīth and Islamic law in particular.