Philanthropy for Social Justice in Islamic Societies: Rights-based Approach


Should the charitable practices be conceived in terms of a moral and social “right” of the beneficiaries to receive assistance?

In view of religious motivation of charitable giving by the vast majority of Muslims, the proposed rights-based approach needs to be founded on an appropriate Islamic justification. This can build as much as possible on existing interpretations of Islamic scriptural sources and traditional institutions, but should not be limited to pre-existing views on the subject.

A “rights-based approach” to charitable giving is critically important in securing the entitlement of the most deserving beneficiaries, as well as for promoting the efficacy and sustainability of philanthropic and other types of civic organizations. It is also necessary for the better mobilization and distribution of the internal material resources of Islamic societies for their own economic and social development. This chapter examines tensions within and among several of the concepts and institutions underpinning the “rights-based” approach for the mobilization and organization of charitable giving in present-day Islamic societies.


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