Constutionalism in the Middle East

L641 is taught by F. Istrabadi

It is often stated both in the scholarly literature as well as in the popular press

that the rule of law has failed to take root in the Islamic world. Such generalizations fail to take into account that different countries in the Middle East have advanced to different levels and to differing extents in their adherence to the rule of law. Though there are similarities between the countries of the Islamic Middle East in respect to constitutionalism and rule-of-law issues, a closer examination reveals that there are several different models extant in that vital area of the world. The purpose of the course, therefore, is to allow the student to study and evaluate the various models for, and differing stages of development of, constitutionalism in the Islamic Middle East. Those models range from constitution-less absolute monarchy to countries which appear to be on the verge of establishing genuine constitutional democracy. The course will also allow the student to evaluate the factors which have contributed to the development of the various institutions within the models studied, including why such development appears to be working in some countries but is arrested in others. Finally the student will have the opportunity of evaluating the role of the international community in encouraging such development.