The Concept of Islamic Socialism

A. K. Brohi

in Islam in Transition: Muslim Perspectives

Published in print January 2006 | ISBN: 9780195174304
Published online November 2007 |
The Concept of Islamic Socialism

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A leading lawyer and statesman, A. K. Brohi held numerous posts in Pakistan's government, among them Minister of Law and Religious Affairs. He oversaw the establishment of the Shara College in Islamabad.

Written in an iconoclastic tone, Brohis essay (1967) finds the concept of Islamic socialism contentious; indeed, he calls it spurious. If, as those responsible for the use of the phrase Islamic socialism believe, Islam has within it the principles of modern socialism, why should Islam be devalued into a mere adjective? On the other hand, Brohi maintains, socialism means ownership and control of the means of production . . . by the community . . . and their distribution in the interests of all even though this definition contradicts Islamic principles because we are asked to believe in the primacy of economic categories. Brohis conflation of socialism with Marxism differs from the approach of Shaykh Mahmud Shaltut and Mustafa al-Sibai, for whom socialist principles are defined in terms not of an avowedly materialistic approach but of a humanistic one.

Chapter.  1412 words. 

Subjects: Society and Culture ; Islam

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