This chapter analyzes the legal, political, and social dimensions of water in Islamic law (sharia), incorporating some comparisons with Western and international law. The issues considered include the law and the political challenges of water, the fundamentals of sharia and water, the centrality of custom (‘urf) to that relationship, the development of modern secular water codes in Muslim nations and their connection with sharia, reforms in the modern epoch, the ascendancy of Western law and its consequences, the continued relevance of sharia to water, and conclusions.


Custom (‘urfhadith (traditions of the Prophet) international law jurisprudence (fiqhqadi (judge) Quran sharia schools of law (madhahibsunna (actions of the Prophet) umma (Muslim community) 


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© Springer Science + Business Media B.V 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Thomas Naff
    • 1
  1. 1.University of PennsylvaniaPhiladelphia

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