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Title: Historicising Islamisation in Pakistan: Constitutions, Contentions and Contradictions
Contributor(s): Ahmed, Imran  (author)orcid ; Brasted, Howard Vining  (supervisor)orcid ; Zafarullah, Habib  (supervisor)orcid ; McLean, Lesley  (supervisor)orcid 
Conferred Date: 2019-10-15
Copyright Date: 2019-06-14
Thesis Restriction Date until: 2024-10-15
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Related DOI: 10.1007/978-3-319-90749-9_7

Is Pakistan the ‘Islamic’ Republic it claims to be? How has it sought to resolve its Islamic identity? What role have its constitutions played in addressing this contested and contentious problem? What issues have different ‘Islamic’ constitutional innovations produced? What issues need be considered in order to resolve the problem of reconciling the role and place of Islam in the state? This thesis addresses these related questions and provokes the reader to reconsider the conventional wisdom held about Islamisation as a means to render Pakistan suitably Islamic.

This thesis charts new territory by mapping the origins and evolution of constitutional ideas pertaining to Islam. It demonstrates that Islamic constitutional reforms were geared to address pertinent political problems in Pakistan and respond to new challenges, ideologies and historical contingencies. It historicises the process that has led to the belief that Islamisation, as it is understood today, is the preeminent and exclusive method of creating an Islamic political order in Pakistan.

This thesis demonstrates that the important and contentious issues pertaining to Islam possess a close constitutional connection. It investigates the question of why Islamic provisions in Pakistan’s constitutional texts assume the shape they do. It demonstrates that the idea of an Islamic Pakistan has been an evolving concept driven as much by politics as it is by historical contingencies. It explains that the nature of the legal and sovereign imaginaries of the nation-state itself is a key to understanding Pakistan’s inner ambiguities and the country’s struggle to resolve its Islamic identity. It argues that answers to the question of what it is that makes a political and legal order Islamic remains unclear and suggests that perhaps more insoluble and intractable issues need to be considered when constituting religion within the framework of the nation-state. This thesis also proffers insights into potential opportunities and pitfalls which constitution-makers may encounter in relation to the constitutionalising of Islam

Finally, this thesis is a Thesis by Publication and its five substantive chapters are in the form of self-contained papers – four of which have been accepted for publication and the fifth chapter is at present under review.

Publication Type: Thesis Doctoral
Fields of Research (FoR) 2020: 480702 Constitutional law
430301 Asian history
500405 Religion, society and culture
Socio-Economic Objective (SEO) 2020: 280113 Expanding knowledge in history, heritage and archaeology
280114 Expanding knowledge in Indigenous studies
HERDC Category Description: T2 Thesis - Doctorate by Research

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Awarded the Chancellor's Doctoral Research Medal on 15/10/19

Appears in Collections:School of Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences
Thesis Doctoral

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