This shiur is really about the Rabbis of Kairouan and the codification of the Talmud. Having never heard of Kairouan at all until very recently it amazes me how many famous Rabbis lived there or learnt there.
I have also wondered for many years about what made the Talmud a binding text on all of Yisrael. We know that Ravina and Rav Ashi were the end of the Amoraim, but they were not the last Rabbis to add to the Talmud. At what stage (and why) did it switch from a fluid, oral, 'text' to a written text which was accepted by all of Yisrael?
I think the answer may be something to do with Kairouan and the story of the Four Captives (even though I recognise that the story is probably not a 'true' on - in the sense of having happened as written. But it may allude to a true principle about the Talmud).
As well as Rabbeinu Chananel this shiur mentions Rabbeinu Nissim, and their student, Rav Yitzchak Alfasi.
Also in this shiur - why learning 'Rif Yomi' is possibly more important for you than learning 'daf yomi'. (Though I also know that daf yomi has a lot of advantages that are nothing to do with the learning and the Torah).
Here is the shiur:
Here is the audio shiur (and the pdf sheets to download if you want).
(Right click and then 'download as')
Rabbeinu Chananel source sheet