Master Class: The Muwatta’ Through the Ages

October 13, 2022

The master class is intended to introduce the students to how a text like the Muwatta’ has been read by Muslims and even non-Muslims over its long, 1,000+ year history. Students will read a representative sample of selections from the Muwatta, from various Muslim commentators, and modern academic scholarship. By the end of the class, students should have a greater appreciation of the structure of the Muwatta’ as a text, the different roles it has played in Islamic religious and legal culture, and how modern scholars have understood it.

Date, Time, and Format
The 3-hour online synchronous master class will take place on Thursday, November 17, 2022 from 2:00 – 5:00 pm. The class will take place in person (with accommodations for online participation).

This session is open to 15 students registered in a graduate degree program, with preference given to University of Toronto students. Students from all disciplines are welcome. Registration is via application process given the limited enrolment.

To apply, please prepare a cover letter outlining your interest in the master class (one page maximum), and include your abridged CV (three pages maximum). Send all application materials via email to by Tuesday, November 1, 2022.

Required Texts
Students who have registered for the master class will receive access to a set of required texts. Students are expected to have reviewed the required texts in preparation for their participation in the class.

Faculty Bio
Mohammad H. Fadel is a Professor at the Faculty of Law, which he joined in January 2006. Professor Fadel wrote his Ph.D. dissertation on legal process in medieval Islamic law while at the University of Chicago and received his JD from the University of Virginia School of Law. Professor Fadel has published numerous articles in Islamic legal history and Islam and liberalism. He has translated Shihāb al-Dīn al-Qarāfī’s al-Iḥkām fī Tamyīz al-Fatāwā ʿan al-Aḥkām wa Taṣarrufāt al-Qāḍī wa’l-Imām (The Criterion for Distinguishing Legal Opinions from Judicial Rulings and the Administrative Acts of Judges and Rulers, Yale University Press, 2017) and Mālik b. Anas’s al-Muwaṭṭaʾ Riwāyat Yaḥyā b. Yaḥyā al-Laythī (The Muwaṭṭaʾ, the Royal Moroccan Edition: the Recension of Yaḥyā b. Yaḥyā al-Laythī, Harvard Islamic Law Series, 2019).

A PDF version of this announcement is available below: