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Islam and Liberal CitizenshipThe Search for an Overlapping Consensus$
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Andrew F. March

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780195330960

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2009

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195330960.001.0001

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(p.259) Conclusion
Islam and Liberal Citizenship

Andrew F. March (Contributor Webpage)

Oxford University Press

This chapter summarizes the arguments of the book and introduces general observations on how Islamic methods are used to justify liberal citizenship and the relationship of moral obligation with non-Muslims. One pattern is that of broad, general, conservative statements (often against certain aspects of liberal citizenship) followed by clarification or qualification in the details. A second pattern consists in a general claim about the inherent flexibility, pragmatism, and eudaemonism of Islamic law, with an emphasis on the cost-benefit analysis of each individual practice. A third pattern emphasizes the general substantive aims of Islamic law (maqasid al-shari’a) and ethics without necessarily claiming that this constitutes or necessitates a general rethinking or reworking of shari’a. All of these approaches are made easier when one assumes that the non-Muslim state in question proclaims a public neutrality similar to Rawls’s political liberalism.

Keywords:   moral obligation, Islamic methods, maqasid al-shari’a, neutrality, political liberalism

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