Munich Personal RePEc Archive

Islamic economics: morality, rationality, and research

Hasan, Zubair (2020): Islamic economics: morality, rationality, and research. Published in: KAUJ: Islamic Economics , Vol. 34, No. 2 (1 July 2021): pp. 3-13.


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The lead paper of Asad Zaman (2021) – Islamic alternatives to the secular morality embedded in modern economics– under review, is lucid and well documented; it speaks of his scholarship. The author talks of secular moral values ingrained in secular economics. Among them, the learned author focuses on ‘pleasure and profit’ as the goals of modern economics and scarcity buried in its foundations. He regards these two as definitional for secular rationality leading to positivism and what it implies. Since this view, in his opinion, is devoid of human traits like compassion, equity, and altruism, he proposes an Islamic alternative as a replacement. While some observations of the author in this regard are well-meaning and well taken, we shall evaluate the author’s critique of mainstream positions to see if they need rejection or reform for compatibility with Islamic norms. We shall argue that reform is a better alternative than refusal.

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