In the book, Maududi argues that respect for human rights has always been enshrined in Sharia law (indeed that the roots of these rights are to be found in Islamic doctrine) and criticises Western notions that there is an inherent contradiction between the two.
Western scholars have, for the most part, rejected Maududi's analysis. Bielefeldt (2000) characterises Maududi's argument as a "superficial and uncritical 'Islamization' of human rights" that fails to address tensions between human rights and shariah law. In addition, he criticises Maududi for employing a narrow definition of equality that gives no consideration to what Bielefeldt considers "the two main issues over which traditional shariah and modern human rights collide": gender and religion. Carle (2005) terms the book "influential", but echoes Bielefeldt's criticisms.