2013 Submitted Papers
The BISA Conference Papers Database aims to be a valuable resource for anyone interested in BISA studies. It contains abstracts and papers presented by established academics, practitioners and doctoral students at previous BISA conferences.
Islamic Feminism: Oxymoronic or Compatible?
Islamic feminism, as it has been labelled, has proven, and is still proving, to be a controversial issue throughout the Muslim world. The issues it covers range from the private to the public sphere with demands being made with regard to women’s right to divorce their husbands; their right to work (in any field); their right to participate and be represented in local and regional politics; their right to legal equality; and their right to choose how they dress, whether it be veiled or unveiled. These, however, only cover a few of the demands being made. In order to have a balanced discussion on the discourse of Islamic feminism, a comparison will be done of Egypt and Iran. This will take on a thematic approach with issues such as how Islamic feminism relates to each state; how groups have developed and what it is they seek to change; and finally, whether there is a future for Islamic feminism. This paper will argue that women have sought, and still seek, equal rights to men; the methods they used to establish groups were similar to those used by other movements in the Muslim world. In both states the feminist movement has been criticised for being ‘Westernised’ and ‘corrupt’. This paper will also argue that there is no great distinction between Islamic feminism and ‘Western feminism’ as they all seek the same rights; the primary difference is the environment in which they are trying to promote them. Finally, the main argument of this paper will be that it is not religion that makes a difference, but the manner in which it is interpreted; therefore Islam and feminism can be seen as compatible.
The Politics of Leadership in Global Health