States and Women's Rights The Making of Postcolonial Tunisia, Algeria, and Morocco

ISBN-10: 0520225767
ISBN-13: 9780520225763
Edition: 2001
List price: $33.95 Buy it from $3.49
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Description: At a time when the situation of women in the Islamic world is of global interest, here is a study that unlocks the mystery of why women's fates vary so greatly from one country to another. Mounira M. Charrad analyzes the distinctive nature of  More...

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Book details

List price: $33.95
Copyright year: 2001
Publisher: University of California Press
Publication date: 10/30/2001
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 362
Size: 6.00" wide x 9.00" long x 1.00" tall
Weight: 1.342
Language: English

At a time when the situation of women in the Islamic world is of global interest, here is a study that unlocks the mystery of why women's fates vary so greatly from one country to another. Mounira M. Charrad analyzes the distinctive nature of Islamic legal codes by placing them in the larger context of state power in various societies. Charrad argues that many analysts miss what is going on in Islamic societies because they fail to recognize the logic of the kin-based model of social and political life, which she contrasts with the Western class-centered model. In a skillful synthesis, she shows how the logic of Islamic legal codes and kin-based political power affect the position of women. These provide the key to Charrad's empirical puzzle: why, after colonial rule, women in Tunisia gained broad legal rights (even in the absence of a feminist protest movement) while, despite similarities in culture and religion, women remained subordinated in post-independence Morocco and Algeria. Charrad's elegant theory, crisp writing, and solid scholarship make a unique contribution in developing a state-building paradigm to discuss women's rights. This book will interest readers in the fields of sociology, politics, law, women's studies, postcolonial studies, Middle Eastern studies, Middle Eastern history, French history, and Maghrib studies.

List of Maps and Tables
Preface
Acknowledgments
Note on Foreign Terms and Transliteration
Introduction
Similarities: Common Heritage of the Maghrib
State Formation in Kin-Based Societies
States, Nations, and Local Solidarities
Central/Local Tension in the History of the Maghrib
The "Republics of Cousins" in Politics
Islam and Family Law: An Unorthodox View
The Law in Islam
Islamic Family Law
Customary Law
Women Ally with the Devil: Gender, Unity, and Division
Men as Unity
Women as Division
Marriage Alliances: Ideology and Reality
Veils and Walls
Men Work with Angels: Power of the Tribe
Ties That Bind: Tribal Solidarity
Tribes, Islamic Unity, and Markets
Tribes and Central Authority
Historical Differences
The Precolonial Polity: National Variations
Tunisia: Early Development of Centralized Institutions
Algeria: Tribal Isolation and Weak State
Morocco: Land of Government Versus Land of Dissidence
Family Law as Mirror of the Polity
Colonial Rule: French Strategies
Form of Colonial Domination
Colonial Manipulation of Family Law
Three Paths to Nation-State and Family Law
Palace, Tribe, and Preservation of Islamic Law: Morocco
Coalition between Palace and Tribe (1940s-50s)
Islamic Family Law Preserved: Choice of the Monarchy (1950s)
Elite Divisions and the Law in Gridlock: Algeria
Partial Reliance on Kin-Based Groups (1950s-60s)
Family Law Held Hostage to Political Divisions (1950s-80s)
State Autonomy from Tribe and Family Law Reform: Tunisia
State Autonomy from Tribes (1930s-50s)
The Transformation of Family Law (1930s-50s)
Conclusion. State-Building, Family Law, and Women's Rights
History, Strategy, and Policy
Some Theoretical Implications
Glossary
Notes
Selected Bibliography
Author Index
Subject Index

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