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States and Women's Rights notes

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Political Science
POLI 1042
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States and Women’s Rights By Mounira M. Charrad • Role of virtue (or lack thereof) in the west o Anti-federalist POV o We share Naipaul’s prejudices on behalf of modern west  Finds it disturbing to hear so many people appeal to sacred texts • Distract ourselves from fundamental question and look for entertainment • We STILL long for justice • Charrad focuses on how women’s rights were established in Tunisia, Morocco, and Algeria • Family Law determines what women’s life is like and actions she could take o Suggests nature of society  patriarchal manifestation and hierarchy  Laws of nation suggest ways should be rather than what they are • Issues of normative values • How to defend opinions of justice with reasons? • Charrad uses case studies: Algeria, Morocco, Tunisia o “Maghreb” nations o Most liberal family law = Tunisia  Most conservative = Morocco • Reason for difference: political authority had to gain power  up against different Islam tribes who held a lot of power before country gained independence o Had own system of values, conservative-leaning, favors male and male warriors, women were not equal because they can’t secure the tribe or prosperity  Formation of centralized governments • 3 nations originally governed by France o Gained independence in 50s and 60s • Code of Personal Status (modern/liberal) o Set up against previous, pre-existing Islamic Law (Sharia) that is religion based/conservative o 3 states’ passing of code of personal status depended on state relation with the tribes and kin groups • Tribe = group of people connected through customs, language, blood, patrilineal kinship o Often asserts an autonomy that is not real • World view of Islam differs from view of the tribe o Islam extends, great umma, universal community, doesn’t observe borders, race, divisions, politics, customs o Tribe do, but they are also Islamic  Not universalist  Not liberal, appeal to tradition, intractability Similarities • How could forces of liberalism and modernity break power of tribe? How did western forces break influence of tribe? o Divide and conquer  divide tribes against each other, play them off one another o Introducing universality of nation breaks hierarchy in tribe, more in world that’s appealing o If state could provide incentive to break loyalty to tribes/tribal formation • Compare to Publius weakening religion in America… o Ambition, appeal to peoples’ reason/rational faculty o Turn them against each other, unleash self-interest, economic prosperity, make them envious of material goods  Show what west has to offer • French responded to problem in 3 different ways: o Ibn Khaldun  emphasizes solidarity, group solidarity (Asabiyyah)  Good to analyzing because referencing strong kinship ties and how hard it was to break cohesions of tribes o France attempting to break group solidarity • Role of sexes in Sharia: o Female is subordinate  No female equivalent to divorce  Make/kin ability to arrange marriages  Inheritance rights • Half as much as what male gets o Concept comes from the Koran • Have to look at 4 sources of Law: Koran, Sunna, reasoning, community consensus o No church/state divide  Cant critique God • 4 legal school: Maliki, Hanbal (conservative), Hanaffi (liberal), and Shafi • Women are inferior to inheritance line of agnate  male relative to patrilineal line  clear patriarchal sensibility • Marriage = contract, not sacrament, between 2 females o Legitimization of sexual relations o No minimum age for marriage o Doesn’t require bride’s presence for marriage to be valid  Only guardian’s expression of verbal consent matters • Jabr = father’s power over women’s marriage o Bride price = price man has to pay to marry woman  HER money, not husband’s  Minimum of financial stability for woman  Incentive for man not to divorce the woman o Can marry up to 4 women at a time as long as you’re able to treat each wife equally • FBD = Father’s Brother’s Daughter o Man should ideally marry his father’s brother’s daughter (cousin)  Preferred because… • Bride price is lower • Smoother transition • Economically beneficial • Encourages tribal solidarity o Keeps notion of unity within the tribe o Increases power of the tribe because increase in population • Called kin-endogamy  preferred form of marriage • What percent age is available to human individuals concerning discretion and inheritance? o 2/3 of matters are regulated in Koran specifically to various agnates  Status of divine injunction because God literally said this • Very specific legal injunctions that relate to inheritance and successions o 1/3 of matters (monetary, land, etc.) left to discretion • Quota sharer = identified in Sharia, not clearly tied to agnatism o Allows non-agnate members to be able to inherit  Listed on pg 42 • Generally women are awarded 50% as much as the men inherited from the inheritance • A way of getting around strict percentages waqf o Pious endowment • Tribal laws were generally worse towards women o Koran supports and is seen to advance women’s rights  Specified by God himself • Contradictory: o Ties among lineage with men o By marrying, you bring a woman from other lineages into kin group • “Amm” = father/father’s relatives  more important • “Khal” = maternal relatives • Paternal is more important because of patriarchal lineage o Always preference in kin group to marry agnatically • Exogamous marriages threaten solidarity of tribe group o Not fully loyal to one tribe, viewed as an outsider  Her sexuality is viewed as an outsider • Female sexuality is so problematic because they believe that men can’t control himself. Women are responsible for controlling/hiding sexuality o Architecture, sex division, dress are ways to control • If men become emotionally invested in women, not as invested in God o Woman resembles Satan and evokes man to create sin and pine over them  In their nature, women are more closely tied to nature and power of nature. Power of nature is more destructive than constructive. Must be contained • Women are more unaware of social barriers than men • Lack social propriety o Preserve ayla  reputation/honor of tribe • Woman who vi
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