Disiplinlerarası Çalışmalar Dergisi Journal of Interdisciplinary Studies

The Political Meaning of the Transition from the Period of Khulafâ al-Râshidîn (Rightly Guided Caliphs) to the Period of Umayyads: Caliphate-Kingdom Debate. -An Analysis of Three Seerah Texts-

The problem of how to understand the transition form the historical period of Khulafâ al-Râshidîn (Rightly Guided Caliphs) to that of Umayyads is one of the most controversial issues in the history of Islam. The way to handle this debate also sheds light on how to understand larger issue of Islamic political thought. I will analyze three approaches to this debate that have emerged and become dominant in the seerah literature. 1. A modernist and reductionist approach that presents this transition as one from a republican regime to an absolutist one; as such, the transition is normatively seen in a negative light (Zekai Konrapa), 2. The “umranic” app- roach that views the change as a result of a natural process of transformation of “asabiyya” into “mulk” (Ahmed Cevdet Pasha), 3. An approach that looks at the debate from the perspective of basic (Quranic) prenciples and sees the “mulk”-based regime as the one that is not categorically denounced in the Qur’an (Muhammad Hamidullah).

Hızır Murat KÖSE

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