Azizah Y. al-Hibri

Professor Emerita of Law
Founder and Chair, KARAMAH: Muslim Women Lawyers for Human Rights


Professor Azizah al-Hibri is a Professor Emerita at the Law School, having served on the faculty from 1992 until her retirement in 2012. Her work has centered on developing an Islamic jurisprudence and body of Islamic law that are gender equitable and promote human rights and democratic governance. Professor al-Hibri has authored numerous book chapters, essays, and law review articles on these subjects, and her work has appeared in the highly respected Journal of Law and ReligionHarvard International Review, and University of Pennsylvania Journal of Constitutional Law, among other venues. In 2011, Professor al-Hibri was appointed by President Obama to serve as a commissioner on the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom. She received the Virginia First Freedom Award from the Council for America's First Freedom in 2007, the Dr. Betty Shabazz Recognition Award from Women in Islam in 2006, and the University of Richmond's Distinguished Educator Award in 2004, and was named a Fulbright scholar in 2001. Professor al-Hibri is the founding editor of Hypatia: A Journal of Feminist Philosophy, and founder and president of the organization KARAMAH: Muslim Women Lawyers for Human Rights.


Faith, Values and Lawyering in the 21st Century: Failure of the Compartmentalization Approach, at the International Legal Ethics Conference, "Legal Ethics at a Time of Regulatory Change," London, July 9-12, 2014.

Bar Admissions

New York

District of Columbia

Professional Experience

Professor Emerita of Law (2012-present)
University of Richmond School of Law, Richmond, Va.

Professor of Law (1998-2012)
University of Richmond School of Law, Richmond, Va.

Associate Professor of Law (1992-98)
University of Richmond School of Law, Richmond, Va.

Associate (1987-92)
Debevoise & Plimpton, New York, N.Y.

Associate (1986-87)
Sullivan & Cromwell , New York, N.Y.

Visiting Scholar (1985)
Harvard Divinity School and Center for the Study of World Religions

Summer Associate (1984)
Davis Polk & Wardwell, New York, N.Y.

Summer Intern for Judge Louis H. Pollak (1983)
United States District Court

Summer Intern for Judge William F. Hall, Jr. (1983)
United States District Court

Visiting Associate Professor (Philosophy) (1981-82)
Washington University in St. Louis

Assistant Professor (Philosophy) (1975-83)
Texas A&M University

Selected Publications


Islamic Worldview: Islamic Jurisprudence, An American Muslim Perspective, Vol. 1 (ABA Book Publishing 2014).

Sex, Marriage and Family in World Religions, Co-editor of Islamic section. Don Browning, Christian Green, and John Witte, eds. (Columbia University Press, 2006).


An Islamic Perspective on Domestic Violence, 27 Fordham Int'l L. J. 195 (December 2003).

Islamic and American Constitutional Law: Borrowing Possibilities or a History of Borrowing?, 1 U. Pa. J. Const. L. 492 (1999).

Legal Reform: Reviving Human Rights in the Muslim World, 20 Harv. Int'l L.J. 50 (Summer, 1998).


Marriage and Divorce: Legal Foundations, The Oxford Encyclopedia of the Muslim World (Oxford 2009).

The Nature of the Islamic Marriage: Sacramental, Covenantal, or Contractual, in Covenant Marriage in Comparative Perspective, John Witte and Eliza Ellison, eds., 2005.

Redefining Muslim Women's Roles in the Next Century, in Democracy and the Rule of Law, Norman Dorsen and Prosser Gifford, eds. (Congressional Quarterly, 2001).

Is Western Patriarchal Feminism Good for Third World/Minority Women?, in Is Multiculturalism Bad for Women? Susan Okin, ed., 41-46 (Princeton University Press, 1999).


J.D., University of Pennsylvania Law School 1985

Ph.D., University of Pennsylvania 1975

B.A., American University of Beirut 1966

Contact Information

(202) 234-7302/03
(202) 234-7304 (Fax)

Areas of Expertise

Islamic Jurisprudence
Islamic Family Law and Constitutional Law
Women's Rights
Freedom of Religion