Dr. Lena Salaymeh

מנהלת הפקולטה למשפטים סגל אקדמי בכיר
Dr. Lena Salaymeh
Phone: 03-6407490


Lena Salaymeh is Associate Professor (Senior Lecturer) at Tel Aviv Law. She researches and teaches Islamic and Jewish jurisprudence in both historical and contemporary legal systems. Her book, The Beginnings of Islamic Law: Late Antique Islamicate Legal Traditions (Cambridge University Press, 2016) explores how critical historiography can illuminate Islamic legal beginnings and was awarded the American Academy of Religion Award for Excellence in the Study of Religion, Textual Studies. She has published in Law and History Review, Law & Social Inquiry, Islamic Law & Society, Journal of Legal Education, UC Irvine Law Review, Islam and Christian–Muslim Relations, and The Immanent Frame. Salaymeh also writes and speaks on the politics of knowledge production in Islamic studies. Salaymeh earned her PhD in Legal and Middle Eastern History from UC Berkeley and her JD from Harvard Law School. She is a member of the California Bar. (Her publications can be downloaded at http://telaviv.academia.edu/LenaSalaymeh/)

Research Interests and Teaching

Islamic jurisprudence and legal history; Jewish jurisprudence and legal history; legal historiography; law, "religion," and secularism; law in the contemporary "Middle East" and North Africa; contemporary Islamic law



PhD     University of California, Berkeley

MA       University of California, Berkeley

JD        Harvard Law School

BA       University of California, Berkeley


Academic appointments

Associate Professor of Law (Senior Lecturer) 

Tel Aviv University, Faculty of Law


Directeur d'études invité étranger (January 2017)

École Pratique des Hautes Études


Robbins Associate Research Fellow 

University of California, Berkeley School of Law


Abbreviated CV

Representative Publications

The Beginnings of Islamic Law: Late Antique Islamicate Legal Traditions. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2016.


Donald Trump’s ‘sharia law’ boogeyman is more Islamophobia.” Informed Comment (September 8, 2016).


 “Tunisia’s ‘revolutionary’ lawyers: political mobilization and professional autonomy.” with Eric Gobe, Law & Social Inquiry 40, no. 4 (2016): 311-345.


“Juvenile justice in Muslim-majority states.” Chap. 6 In Juvenile justice in global perspective, edited by Franklin E. Zimring, Maximo Langer and David S. Tanenhaus, 249-87. New York: NYU Press, 2015.


'Comparing' Jewish and Islamic legal traditions: between disciplinarity and critical historical jurisprudence.” Critical Analysis of Law, New Historical Jurisprudence, 2, no. 1 (2015): 153-172.


Every law tells a story: orthodox divorce in Jewish and Islamic legal histories.” UC Irvine Law Review 4, no. 1 (2014): 19-63.


Book sections with Ira M. Lapidus in A history of Islamic societies. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2014.  Additional book sections with Ira M. Lapidus in Islamic societies to the nineteenth century: a global history. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2012.


Propaganda, politics, and profiteering: Islamic law in the contemporary U.S.” Jadaliyya (September 29, 2014).


Commodifying ‘Islamic law’ in the U.S. legal academy.” Journal of Legal Education 63, no. 4 (May 2014): 640-646.


Between scholarship and polemic in Judeo-Islamic studies.” Islam and Christian–Muslim Relations 24, no. 3 (2013): 407-418.


Early Islamic legal-historical precedents: prisoners of war.” Law and History Review 26, no. 3 (2008): 521-544.


Abbreviated CV

Tel Aviv University, P.O. Box 39040, Tel Aviv 6997801, Israel
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