Women and Wage Labour in the Medieval Islamic West: Legal Issues in an Economic Context

in Journal of the Economic and Social History of the Orient
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The evidence of the late medieval period, 11th-15th centuries, indicates that women's participation in the labour market was both considerable and diversified. This paper studies whether and how women's wage labour was affected, controlled and regulated by laws, courts and judges, by using an array of the Mālikī legal sources from Muslim Spain and North Africa. It shows the existence of a legal approach straddling a strict application of the law of the ijāra, with adjustments to family law and admission of customary law, but more importantly, an approach inspired and adapted to the framework of women's property rights and therefore beneficial to them.

Journal of the Economic and Social History of the Orient

Journal d'Histoire Economique et Sociale de l'Orient



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