Friday, September 20, 2013

New Release: Enayat, "Law, State, and Society in Modern Iran"

Palgrave Macmillan has released Law, State, and Society in Modern Iran: Constitutionalism, Autocracy, and Legal Reform, 1906-1941, by Hadi Enayat. The publisher describes the book as follows:
Incorporating history, sociology, and rule of law studies, this book sheds light on an understudied but fascinating dimension of modernization in Iran, namely the emergence of a new legal system between the 1906 Constitutional Revolution and the end of Reza Shah's rule in 1941. While Iranian constitutionalism can be seen as part of a global trend of constitutional revolutions at the turn of the twentieth century, in Iran, an unusual institutional and historical background shaped a path to legal reform that was in many ways unique. Among other factors, the scholastic legalism of the Shi'i ulama and the considerable autonomy they enjoyed in administering the civil law in the nineteenth century made legal reform a particularly contested, difficult, and politically charged aspect of state building.
A few blurbs:
"Law, State, and Society in Modern Iran offers a perceptive examination of the impact of legal reforms on the process of state building and modernization in the first half of twentieth century in Iran. Its use of a wide range of primary source material will be particularly welcomed by historians of the period, and its broad analytical approach should make it indispensable for comparative studies of legal reforms in the wider context of the Middle East and current debates on constitutional development." -- Ali Gheissari
"Legal transformations of codes, institutions, and procedures constituted a crucial motor in the formation of political modernity and the modern state in Iran. This book contains lucid and original accounts and analyses of the events and processes in these transformations, rich in the details of political struggles and ideological contests, not only between the entrenched clerical hierarchy and the modernizing constitutionalists but also within and across both camps. This is key to understanding the subsequent fractured evolution of Iranian state, society, and revolution." -- Sami Zubaida

2 comments:

Patrick S. O'Donnell said...

I wonder if this is the son of the late Hamid Enayat (one of his children was named Hadi), an excellent scholar whose book, Islamic Political Thought (1982), had an enormous influence on my growing interest in Islamic Studies. In any case, this does look like an important work, thanks for bringing it to our attention.

Patrick S. O'Donnell said...

Oops: of course that should be Modern Islamic Political Thought.