Title

Islamic law and the management of natural resources in seventeenth and eighteenth century ottoman syria

Source of Publication

Environment and History

Abstract

© 2015 The White Horse Press.El$REM Drawing on evidence from seventeenth and eighteenth century Islamic legal sources in Ottoman Syria, the paper examines the laws governing the use and management of natural resources, particularly for agricultural production. Islamic jurists played a key role in mediating the states relationship with local populations and legitimising local practices and customs that governed land and water use. Often, this translated into laws which prioritised protecting the public good while not necessarily challenging existing power structures. The paper also explains how pious endowments (waqfs) were integral to the management of land and water resources in Ottoman Syria. The study sheds light on indigenous narratives regarding the environment and how Islamic law adapted to social and economic circumstances on the ground. Ultimately, the law contributed to ensuring the socio-cultural sustainability of management strategies implemented by local populations vis à vis the environment.

Document Type

Article

First Page

227

Last Page

256

Publication Date

1-1-2015

DOI

10.3197/096734015X14267043141426

Author First name, Last name, Institution

Sabrina Joseph, Zayed University

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