Preservation of built heritage: an Islamic perspective (1)

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to explore the concept of built heritage preservation from an Islamic perspective. This study will dig out the jurisprudential principles to challenge contemporary destruction of built heritage in the Muslim contexts. Design/methodology/approach: The research challenges the radicals’ opinion by revealing their evidence to destroy the various built heritage. In fact, it confronts these acts and assists the international community to understand the basic values of Islam toward the environment and built heritage specifically. This exploratory research will follow this lead and seek the objective, first, by investigating the concept of succession and the urbanization of Earth by mankind. Reassuringly, the research introduces few verses from the Holy Qur’an to support the various arguments presented and provide a qualitative understanding of the interpretations. Moreover, few speeches of the Prophet (PBUH) are added to ease synthesizing the understanding of specific principles related to the Islamic law (Shari’ah). This study provides an in-depth understanding toward the legitimacy of the act of preservation under the umbrella of the intents and objectives of the Islamic law. Findings: This study confirms that preservation of the built heritage is legitimate from the Islamic law perspective; this is due to the fact that Islam mandates mankind to utilize wisely the resources available to shape a proper physical and economic environment. The preservation of the built heritage returns with benefit to the major society and assures that resources are recycled to serve humanity for longer generations. Research limitations/implications: This research promotes the concepts of good/benefit and avoiding harm to support the crux of built heritage preservation from an Islamic perspective. In quest of this notion, various scholars’ work throughout the Islamic civilization has been revealed to draw some shed on the rooted arguments to highlight various concepts of Islam toward preservation. Originality/value: This paper fulfills an identified need to prove that Islam is against the destruction of built heritage and historic monuments and against all acts of violence and terrorism.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)366-380
Number of pages15
JournalJournal of Cultural Heritage Management and Sustainable Development
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2017



  • Built heritage
  • Extremism
  • Islamic law
  • Preservation
  • Radicalism

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Conservation
  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Business, Management and Accounting(all)
  • Urban Studies

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