Younis, Hana. A Qadi in the Christian Empire A Qadi in the Christian Empire : the staff and work of the Sharia Courts in Bosnia and Herzegovina 1878-1914

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A Qadi in the Christian Empire A Qadi in the Christian Empire : the staff and work of the Sharia Courts in Bosnia and Herzegovina 1878-1914

Autor: Hana Younis


Godina izdanja: 2023

Broj stranica: 429

Format: 25 cm

Uvez: meki

ISBN: 978-9958-649-56-1 (Institute of History University)
ISBN: 978-9958-11-168-6 (Federal Ministry of Education and Science)

Depicting the life and work of the Sharia court staff in the period after 1878 was a major challenge that occupied me for almost a whole decade. That is exactly how long it took to collect documents for this hitherto neglected subject. These pages of archived material revealed, in some cases directly and in others indirectly, their wishes and hopes, material status, marital status, way of thinking, and how they fit into the new system. Eventually, I was able to gather enough information about these once respected and influential individuals to attempt to bring them closer to scientific understanding. The analysis of the documents was sometimes surprising, sometimes deeply saddening, and it sometimes made me laugh, but the truth is none of those documents left me indifferent, and at the end of the research, I was stunned by the image of the life, work, and status of the Sharia court staff during the period of Austro-Hungarian occupation. Although the documents of the Sharia courts were destroyed forever, based on the available funds, I tried to depict every segment of the life and work of the staff of the Sharia courts. I tried to write the text so that it would be readable and clear for both experts and the general reading public, so that through the picturesque daily life of the Sharia court staff, the reader could gain a greater understanding of the turbulent historical period of the intertwining of East and West.
After its publication in Bosnian, the book sold out within a few months, to my great surprise, won the award for “Best Publishing Enterprise of the Year” at the XXXIII International Sarajevo Book and School Fair 2022, and found its readers outside the scientific community, which was particularly important to me. I am particularly pleased that the Ministry of Science, Higher Education and Youth has provided funds for the translation of the book into English. Language limitations have prevented the great works of Bosnian historiography from being properly recognized, so I consider it of the utmost importance that the book be published in a language that is widely spoken throughout the world. This will enable the researchers and scientists around the world to gain insight into this topic. My sincere hope is that the English version will reach the readership and introduce them to what it was like to be a qadi in the Christian empire, what it was like to represent Islam under Christian rule, and what it was like to live in Bosnia and Herzegovina during that turbulent time, when everything was divided between alla turca and alla franca, old and new, east and west, traditional and modern.
My family, colleagues, and friends have played an essential role in the development of the book from an idea into a tangible work. For the final version of the book, I would like to express my deepest gratitude to the reviewers: the late Prof. Dr. Fikret Karčić and Prof. Dr. Zijad Šehić, whose constructive comments and instructions made the book substantially better and more understandable. Furthermore, I would like to thank Hafiz Prof. Dr. Halilović Safvet and his wife Muvedeta for the detailed explanations they provided regarding a number of fiqh doubts I encountered during the writing process. Additionally, I am grateful for the colleagues at the Archive of Bosnia and Herzegovina, the Tuzla Canton Archives, the Herzegovina-Neretva Canton Archives, the Historical Archives of Sarajevo, and the Gazi Husrev-Bey’s Library, who have always been patient while I searched for additional documents. I am thankful to our dear colleagues at the Institute of History, who have always taken the time to listen to all my great discoveries, but also to numerous dilemmas: Dr. Dženita Sarač-Rujanac, Dr. Sanja Gladanac-Petrović, Mr. Mehmed Hodžić and Dr. Enes Dedić. I am especially grateful to the director and editor Dr. Sedad Bešlija for his thoughtful comments, his support at all times, and for enabling me to conduct research in archives outside of Sarajevo.
While everything that we write is a reflection of ourselves, the selfless support of my husband, whose endless understanding made writing much easier, is evident in the many lines of thought, analysis, and conclusion in this text. The same applies to my daughter and son-in-law who, even though thousands of kilometers away, were always by my side, willing to listen to me and encourage me to go forward with their enthusiasm. It is incredibly difficult for me to find the words to express how grateful I am for everything; without them all my work would be meaningless.
Sarajevo, January 2023

Younis, Hana. A Qadi in the Christian Empire : the staff and work of the Sharia Courts in Bosnia and Herzegovina 1878-1914


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