Human Rights in Islamic Jurisprudence Why Should All Human Beings Be Inviolable?
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CitationŞENTÜRK, Recep. "Human Rights in Islamic Jurisprudence Why Should All Human Beings Be Inviolable?". The Future of Religious Freedom: Global Challenges,(2013):290-311.
In the diversity of their religious communities, Muslim cities of the Middle Ages, such as Istanbul, Jerusalem, Baghdad, Samarkand, Bukhara, and Cairo, looked like the modern New York, San Francisco, Berlin, Paris, and London. In contrast, European cities during the Middle Ages were quite homogeneous, usually encompassing one predominant Christian denomination. This continued more or less until the second half of the nineteenth century. Since then Western cities have clearly turned into cosmopolitan metropolitan centers housing diverse faith and ethnic groups. What made Muslim cities during the Middle Ages similar to modern cosmopolitan centers? I contend that it was because they operated under norms of Islamic jurisprudence regarding universal human rights, particularly freedom of religion. This finding is surprising given the lagging status of religious freedom in many Muslim-majority nations today, and it suggests that recovering that classical Islamic tradition could have enormous global significance.