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Feminist Activism, Women's Rights, and Legal Reform


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Table of Contents

  • Introduction: Legal Reform and Feminist Activism - Mulki Al-Sharmani
  • 1. Debating Islamic Family Law in Palestine: Citizenship, Gender, and 'Islamic' Idioms - Nahda Shehada
  • 2. Readjusting Women's Too Many Rights: The State, the Public Voice, and Women's Rights in South Yemen - Susanne Dahlgren
  • 3. Reforming Egyptian Family Laws: The Debate about a New Substantive Code - Mulki Al-Sharmani
  • 4. Men Aboard? Movement for a Uniform Family Code in Bangladesh - Sohela Nazneen
  • 5. From Status to Rights: The Shifting Dimensions of Women's Activism in Iranian Family Law Reform - Arzoo Osanloo
  • 6. Moroccan Divorce Law, Family Court Judges, and Spouses' Claims: Who Pays the Cost When a Marriage is Over? - Jessica Carlisle
  • 7. Organizing to Monitor Implementation of the Maria da Penha Law in Brazil - Silvia de Aquino
  • 8. Implementing Domestic Violence Legislation in Ghana: The Role of Institutions - Takyiwaa Manuh and Angela Dwamena-Aboagye

About the Author

Mulki Al-Sharmani is an Academy of Finland research fellow and lecturer in the Study of Religion Unit, Faculty of Theology, University of Helsinki.


'The essays in this wonderful collection range across different jurisdictions and legal systems (in the Middle East and North Africa, Bangladesh, Ghana and Brazil) to present deeply contextualized examinations of the origins of and relationship between feminist action and legal change. The material is rich and the analyses compelling; it really is a significant contribution.' Lynn Welchman, professor of law in the Middle East and North Africa, SOAS 'Law has been both a tool for marginalizing women and a pathway to their empowerment. This is a timely collection of case studies of feminist struggles for legal reform, both successes and failures, in diverse contexts in the Middle East, West Africa, South Asia, and Latin America. It sheds much new light on the complex relationship between feminist activism and legal reform.' Ziba Mir-Hosseini, Centre for Islamic and Middle Eastern Law, SOAS, and founding member of Musawah ( 'This exciting collection is a major contribution to the scholarship of feminist social change activism everywhere. Analytically and methodologically sophisticated case studies consider the large and complicated historical, social, economic, cultural, and educational forces faced by women in their struggles for legal reform. These engaged articles and the book as a whole focus deeply perceptive and respectful attention on the urgent strategic issues faced by feminist activists of all stripes, drawing vital lessons for us all.' Angela Miles, University of Toronto

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