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ʿĀ’isha’s Corrective of the Companions: A Translation and Critical Ḥadīth Study of al- Zarkashī’s al-Ijāba li-Īrādi mā Istadrakathu ʿĀ’isha ʿala al Ṣahāba

Rehman, Sofia Abdur (2019) ʿĀ’isha’s Corrective of the Companions: A Translation and Critical Ḥadīth Study of al- Zarkashī’s al-Ijāba li-Īrādi mā Istadrakathu ʿĀ’isha ʿala al Ṣahāba. PhD thesis, University of Leeds.

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Abstract

This research presents for the first time a partial translation and study of Imam Badr al-Dīn al- Zarkashī’s work, al-Ijāba li-Īrādi mā Istadraktahu ʿĀ’isha ʿAla al-Ṣaḥābah—The Corrective: ʿĀ’isha’s Rectification of the Companions. It critically analyses from the perspective of ḥadīth criticism a number of sections presenting ʿĀ’isha’s refutations and corrections of key Companions including, ʿUmar b. al-Khaṭṭāb, ʿAbdullah b. ʿAbbās, Zayd b. Thābit and Abū Hurayra, applying classical ḥadīth methodology to the scrutiny of narrators by way of impugnment and validation (al- jarḥ wa al-tʿadīl) in an effort to re-construct and re-present ʿĀ’isha as a central authority in Islamic knowledge production. This study constitutes a major rethinking of the Muslim ḥadīth and jurisprudential traditions by evaluating how ʿĀ’isha responded to ḥadīths that were circulating around her and being ascribed, often incorrectly, as authoritative statements of the Prophet. From her critique of overwhelmingly male Companions of the Prophet, the study elicits a methodology for ḥadīth criticism which is sure to challenge classical approaches; additionally, it unearths the scholarly acumen of this great female Companion and mother of the believers, in its discussion of a number of legal positions which ʿĀ’isha held in contradistinction to many of the male authorities among the Companions. This interdisciplinary study goes further than many existing studies of ʿĀ’isha in its highlighting of the way her traditions have been effectively marginalised through the canonisation process which led to the establishment of the canonical corpus, especially al-Bukhārī’s Ṣaḥīḥ. This resulted in ʿĀ’isha’s voice being tragically erased from the heart of the Muslim legal and hadith tradition. This study serves as a model for how the voice of ʿĀ’isha may be given renewed life and significance in the way it re- centres her traditions and thinking. A crucial aspect of this study is its contributing to expanding the horizons of a number of Islamic disciplines. Its contribution to the study of ḥadīth lies in suggestions of re-conceptualising the canonisation of ḥadīth, in the suggestion to extend the criteria of scrutiny of narrators to the Companions, and, most importantly, in the development of an emergent methodology of ʿĀ’isha in the scrutiny of the actual statements (matn) of traditions, not just the chains of transmission (isnād). The contributions of this study to the development of the Muslim legal tradition (fiqh) also lies in a framework that emerges from this research based on the pattern of how ʿĀ’isha approaches juridical matters. The implications for this are many, especially regarding women and their spiritual and daily life and practice.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Keywords: Islam, Hadith, Critical Hadith Studies, Islamic Studies, Gender and Islam, Feminism, Aisha bint Abu Bakr
Academic Units: The University of Leeds > Faculty of Arts, Humanities and Cultures (Leeds) > School of Philosophy, Religion and the History of Science
Identification Number/EthosID: uk.bl.ethos.800482
Depositing User: Dr Sofia Rehman
Date Deposited: 11 Mar 2020 15:58
Last Modified: 11 Apr 2020 09:53
URI: http://etheses.whiterose.ac.uk/id/eprint/26060

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