Advanced Search
MyIDEAS: Login

Law, State Power, and Taxation in Islamic History

Contents:

Author Info

  • Metin Cosgel

    (University of Connecticut)

  • Rasha Ahmed

    (University of Connecticut)

  • Thomas Miceli

    (University of Connecticut)

Abstract

The ruler's power varied greatly in Islamic history over time and space. We explain these variations with a political economy approach to public finance, identifying factors affecting economic power and its constraints. An influential interest group capable of affecting the ruler's power was the legal community ('ulama'). This community could increase the ruler's ability to extract a surplus from the citizenry by conferring legitimacy, thereby lowering the cost of tax-collection. It could also limit power through legal constraints on taxation. We show how changes in legitimacy and legal constraints affected the economic power of rulers in representative episodes of Islamic history and identify general trends and dynamic processes underlying the relationship between the state and the legal community.

Download Info

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
File URL: http://www.econ.uconn.edu/working/2007-01r.pdf
File Function: Full text
Download Restriction: no

Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by University of Connecticut, Department of Economics in its series Working papers with number 2007-01.

as in new window
Length: 43 pages
Date of creation: Jan 2007
Date of revision: Jul 2008
Publication status: Forthcoming in the Journal of Economic Behavior and Organization, 2009
Handle: RePEc:uct:uconnp:2007-01

Note: We thank Barclay Rosser, Timur Kuran, and two anonymous referees for detailed comments and suggestions on an earlier version of this paper presented at the Economic Research on Civilizations Conference on "The Economic Performance of Civilizations: Roles of Culture, Religion, and the Law," held at the University of Southern California in February, 2007. We have also received useful comments from other participants at the IERC conference and participants at the 2007 Economic History Association meetings in Austin, TX, and in seminars at UConn, Wesleyan, and Yale. We are grateful to Templeton/Metanexus Institute for financial support received through the IERC.
Contact details of provider:
Postal: University of Connecticut 341 Mansfield Road, Unit 1063 Storrs, CT 06269-1063
Phone: (860) 486-4889
Fax: (860) 486-4463
Web page: http://www.econ.uconn.edu/
More information through EDIRC

Related research

Keywords: state power; legitimacy; taxation; political economy; Islamic Law; legal constraints;

Other versions of this item:

Find related papers by JEL classification:

This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

References

References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
as in new window
  1. Djankov, Simeon & Glaeser, Edward & La Porta, Rafael & Lopez de Silanes, Florencio & Shleifer, Andrei, 2003. "The new comparative economics," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3054, The World Bank.
  2. Cosgel, Metin & Miceli, Thomas J., 2009. "State and religion," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 37(3), pages 402-416, September.
  3. Rafael La Porta & Florencio Lopez-de-Silanes & Andrei Shleifer & Robert W. Vishny, 1998. "Law and Finance," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 106(6), pages 1113-1155, December.
  4. Beck, T.H.L. & Demirgüç-Kunt , A. & Levine, R., 2001. "Legal theories of financial development," Open Access publications from Tilburg University urn:nbn:nl:ui:12-3125516, Tilburg University.
  5. La Porta, Rafael & Lopez-de-Silanes, Florencio & Pop-Eleches, Cristian & Shleifer, Andrei, 2004. "Judicial Checks and Balances," Scholarly Articles 3451311, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  6. Leopoldo Fergusson, 2006. "Institutions for Financial Development: What are they and where do they come from?," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 20(1), pages 27-70, 02.
  7. William M. Landes & Richard A. Posner, 1976. "Legal Precedent: A Theoretical and Empirical Analysis," NBER Working Papers 0146, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. Edward L. Glaeser & Andrei Shleifer, 2001. "Legal Origins," Harvard Institute of Economic Research Working Papers 1920, Harvard - Institute of Economic Research.
  9. Martin C. McGuire & Mancur Olson Jr., 1996. "The Economics of Autocracy and Majority Rule: The Invisible Hand and the Use of Force," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 34(1), pages 72-96, March.
  10. North, Douglass C. & Weingast, Barry R., 1989. "Constitutions and Commitment: The Evolution of Institutions Governing Public Choice in Seventeenth-Century England," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 49(04), pages 803-832, December.
  11. Barry R. Weingast, 2005. "The Constitutional Dilemma of Economic Liberty," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 19(3), pages 89-108, Summer.
  12. Miceli, Thomas J. & Cosgel, Metin M., 1994. "Reputation and judicial decision-making," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 23(1), pages 31-51, January.
  13. Oran, Ahmad & Rashid, Salim, 1989. "Fiscal Policy in Early Islam," Public Finance = Finances publiques, , vol. 44(1), pages 75-101.
  14. Timur Kuran, 2004. "Why the Middle East is Economically Underdeveloped: Historical Mechanisms of Institutional Stagnation," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 18(3), pages 71-90, Summer.
  15. George Tridmas, 2005. "Judges and Taxes: Judicial Review, Judicial Independence and the Size of Government," Constitutional Political Economy, Springer, vol. 16(1), pages 5-30, 01.
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

Citations

Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
as in new window

Cited by:
  1. Chaudhary, Latika & Rubin, Jared, 2011. "Reading, writing, and religion: Institutions and human capital formation," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 39(1), pages 17-33, March.
  2. Rubin, Jared, 2010. "Bills of exchange, interest bans, and impersonal exchange in Islam and Christianity," Explorations in Economic History, Elsevier, vol. 47(2), pages 213-227, April.
  3. Metin M. Cosgel & Thomas J. Miceli & Jared Rubin, 2011. "Political Legitimacy and Technology Adoption," Working papers 2011-28, University of Connecticut, Department of Economics.
  4. Niklas Potrafke, 2013. "Policies against Human Trafficking: The Role of Religion and Political Institutions," CESifo Working Paper Series 4278, CESifo Group Munich.
  5. M. Shahid Ebrahim & Seema Makhdoomi & Mustapha Sheikh, 2012. "The Political Economy and the Perennial Underdevelopment of the Muslim World," Working Papers 12011, Bangor Business School, Prifysgol Bangor University (Cymru / Wales).
  6. Metin M. Cosgel & Thomas J. Miceli & Jared Rubin, 2010. "The Political Economy of Mass Printing: Legitimacy and Technological Change in the Ottoman Empire," Working papers 2010-02, University of Connecticut, Department of Economics, revised Jan 2012.

Lists

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

Statistics

Access and download statistics

Corrections

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:uct:uconnp:2007-01. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Kasey Kniffin).

If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.