KU News Release


Sept. 6, 2011
Contact: Mindie Paget, School of Law, 785-864-9205

KU professor to present talk on complexities, understanding Islamic law

LAWRENCE — As the 10th anniversary of 9/11 approaches, a University of Kansas School of Law professor will give a talk on understanding the religious and legal tradition that has been thrust into the spotlight in the decade since the terrorist attacks.

Rice Distinguished Professor Raj Bhala will deliver “Understanding Islamic Law” at 3:30 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 7, in the conference hall at the Hall Center for the Humanities. The event is free and open to the public.

The talk is based on Bhala’s new book, “Understanding Islamic Law,” which covers the entire history and religion of Islam and synthesizes it with the development and practice of Islamic law. The presentation will focus on the inseparability of law and religion, the distinction between a sacred and secular legal system and the importance of delineating authentic from inauthentic Islamic legal doctrines. Bhala also will discuss what his book teaches us about the American Empire and its future engagement with the Islamic world.

Bhala is the first American legal scholar to publish a comprehensive textbook on Islamic law. The text is based on three years of research across the globe and 10 years in the classroom. He teaches the subject at the KU School of Law and at Fort Leavenworth’s Command and General Staff College. He is the author of five books and three dozen articles on international trade law, plus five books and 15 articles on international banking law. The University of Kansas awarded him the Kemper Award for Teaching Excellence in 2008.


The University of Kansas is a major comprehensive research and teaching university. University Relations is the central public relations office for KU's Lawrence campus.

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