home Menasseh ben Israel
home Menasseh ben Israel


Wed 14-11-2018
Halakha, Sharia and Secular Law

Symposium: Halakha, Sharia and Secular Law


Thanks to public debates on religion, ritual slaughter, circumcision, or more general the relation between church and state, Halakha (Jewish Law) and Sharia (Islamic Law) are widely known. But what is their true religious significance of these legal traditions? What is their precise meaning, and what is their significance in the context of our secular juridical culture?


Prof. Chaim N. Saiman, (Villanova University, USA) is also William E. Simon Fellow in Religion and Public Life at Princeton University and Jewish Law editor for the Journal of Law and Religion. He will present his new book: Halakhah: The Rabbinic Idea of Law (Princeton University Press, 2018).


Dr. Jan Jaap de Ruiter (Tilburg University) is Arabist and has published extensively on the Arabic language, Islam and populism and the public debate on Islam. He is (co-) author of numerous books on Arabic and co-editor of Imams in Western Europe. Developments, Transformations, and Institutional Challenges (Amsterdam University Press, 2018).


Prof. Ernst Hirsch Ballin (University of Amsterdam/Tilburg) is Professor of Human Rights Law. As a member of the Dutch Christian Democrats (CDA) he held several public offices, including member of parliament, cabinet minister of justice and member of the Council of State. He also served as a judge and is President of the Asser Institute for International and European Law.






14:15 - Prof. Chaim Saiman: What is the sense of Halakha?


15:00 - Dr. Jan Jaap de Ruiter: Between Religious Laws and Secular Societies: Jurisprudence for Muslim Minorities in the West


15:45 - break


16:00 - Prof. Ernst Hirsch Ballin: Religious Citizens: about the Significance of Identities in a Secular State


16:45 - discussion (Saiman, de Ruiter, Hirsch Ballin): Religious vs Secular Law


17:15 - drinks




Date: November 14, 2018


Place: Uilenburgersjoel, Nieuwe Uilenburgerstraat 91, Amsterdam


Entrance: €10, (students and friends of the Menasseh ben Israel Institute €5)


Reservations: mbii@jck.nl, telephone 020-5310325 or via our order form.