The research project on Women,
Religion and Social Change in Pakistan, India and Sri Lanka currently being
undertaken by ICES provides a unique opportunity to explore the cross-cultural
dimensions of continuing tradition and the process of change as these relate to
women and in this the role of religion. A grey area of uncertainty, prejudice,
and very little research, the role of religion in determining the possible for
individual actors, particularly women, has rarely received the attention it
CHRLA is greatly alarmed by
the Cairo Court of Appeals ruling of June 14, 1995, which ordered the divorce of
Nasr Hamed Abu-Zeid (the Cairo University professor) from his wife, Dr. Ibthal
Younis, on the grounds that he was an apostate because of the opinions contained
in his published research.
The argumentation of the
ruling raises problems related to freedom of thought, religious interpretation
and belief, and the privacy of family relationships.
The legal status of the Muslim women (1) in Bangladesh is defined by the principles
of Sharia through Muslim Personal Law along with the general law which is
non-religious and secular in its character. The Muslim personal law covers the
field of marriage, divorce, maintenance, guardianship of children and
inheritance whereas the general law covers the rights under the Constitution,
penal codes, the civil and criminal procedure codes, evidence act etc.
One of the crucial issues affecting women in South Asia
today has been the growth of state sponsored religious fundamentalism. This is
occurring in the context of increasing evidence of violence against women -
dowry murders, sexual harassment, rape often by the police and army, and the
throwing of acid on women in the streets. (1) As a result of campaigns and
agitations by women's movements, these incidents have been highlighted and the
governments have passed some preventive laws, albeit with many loopholes and
Riffat Hassan, a native of Pakistan, received her doctorate
in Islamic Philosophy at Durham, England. Since 1976 she has been a professor in
Religious Studies at University of Louisville, Kentucky. Currently, she is a
visiting lecturer at the Divinity School Harvard University, where she is
working on a forthcoming book entitled "Equal Before Allah". The following
interview was recorded on April 16, 1986 and formed the basis for a November,
1987, Asian Communiqué radio program produced by Betty Milstead of the Center of
Asian Studies, University of Texas, Austin.
15-20,000 political prisoners in Turkey. Student, worker and ecologist
demonstrations are regularly broken up and demonstrators arrested and tortured.
There is a state of emergency in five eastern provinces as the large Kurdish
community continues to fight for its survival. Meanwhile, the regime makes the
superficial move towards liberalism, which are necessary for its application to
join the EEC to be accepted.
following interview Jill Bend from Off Our Backs (OOB) talks to three Turkish
The study of women in the Middle East, now well into its second decade, has produced
an impressive corpus of papers and periodical articles. For purely practical
reasons, this review focuses on writings in English, in a selective rather than
all-inclusive manner. The analysis of women in the Middle East has not always
been undertaken with reference to Islam, but a significant body of works,
influenced partly by the Islamic resurgence, coincident with the rise of the
study of women as a separate field, does have reference to Islam.
Throughout the world, and particularly in Third World
countries, feminists have been sounding the alarm about the rise of religious
and political fundamentalism. Historically, fundamentalism has always been a
move to strengthen patriarchal authority and maintain the "moral order" of
society. Patriarchy, understood as the relations of domination and subordination
that pervade human gender relations, takes different forms in different
historical periods depending on the prevailing material
A ‘Family Code’ law has been introduced which removes many of women’s
basic human rights. She also speaks about contraception, the problem of
abandoned children and the consequences for women of the insistence on virginity
I would like to start with this new law, which is known in Algeria under the
name “Family Code”, (not the name of it, that is “Law on Personal Status”) a
title which is also used in Tunisia and Morocco.