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Minority Religions under Irish Law

Islam in National and International Context

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Edited by Kathryn O'Sullivan

Minority Religions under Irish Law focuses the spotlight specifically on the legal protections afforded in Ireland to minority religions, generally, and to the Muslim community, in particular. Although predominantly focused on the Irish context, the book also boasts contributions from leading international academics, considering questions of broader global importance such as how to create an inclusive environment for minority religions and how to best to regulate religious tribunals. Reflecting on issues as diverse as the right to education, marriage recognition, Islamic finance and employment equality, Minority Religions under Irish Law provides a comprehensive and fresh look at the legal space occupied by many rapidly growing minority religions in Ireland, with a special focus on the Muslim community.
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The World of the Siege

Representations of Early Modern Positional Warfare

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Edited by Anke Fischer-Kattner and Jamel Ostwald

The World of the Siege examines relations between the conduct and representations of early modern sieges. The volume offers case studies from various regions in Europe (England, France, the Low Countries, Germany, the Balkans) and throughout the world (the Chinese, Ottoman and Mughal Empires), from the 15th century into the 18th. The international contributors analyse how siege narratives were created and disseminated, and how early modern actors as well as later historians made sense of these violent events in both textual and visual artefacts. . The volume's chronological and geographical breadth provides insight into similarities and differences of siege warfare and military culture across several cultures, countries and centuries, as well as its impact on both military combatants and civilian observers.
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Edited by Robert McChesney and Mohammad Mehdi Khorrami

This book comprises English translations of Nizhādnāmah-i Afghān (Afghan Genealogy) and Tazakkur al-Inqilāb (Memoir of the Revolution), the culminating works of Fayż Muḥammad Kātib Hazārah’s monumental history of Afghanistan, Sirāj al-tawārīkh (The History of Afghanistan). Nizhādnāmah-i Afghān, a detailed guide to all the ethnic and religious communities in Afghanistan in the first third of the 20th century, is the first locally-produced ethnography by a modern Afghan scholar. The Tazakkur al-Inqilāb is Fayz Muhammad’s journalistic record of seven of the nine months of Amīr Ḥabīb Allāh Kalakānī’s reign in 1929. Together with The History of Afghanistan these works offer an incomparable resource for the history of Afghanistan from the mid-18th to the mid-20th centuries.
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Nadia Sonneveld

Abstract

This essay focuses on recent divorce reforms in Egypt (2000) and Morocco (2004), with equal attention to the positions of men and women who end their marriages. Whereas in Egypt, non-consensual, no-fault divorce reform (khul‘) is open only to women, in Morocco, another form of non-consensual, no-fault divorce, shiqāq, is open to both women and men, with men using it almost as frequently as women. Based on legal analysis and anthropological fieldwork, I consider first how men and women navigate rights and duties in divorce and then examine the differences between the two countries in the way men and women try to obtain divorce. I conclude that when both men and women are given opportunities for non-consensual, no fault divorce, highly gender-specific divorce regimes, such as the ṭalāq and taṭlīq, quickly lose their popularity.

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Sylvia Vatuk

Abstract

This essay examines khulʿ divorce as it is interpreted, understood, and practiced in India by Sunni Hanafi Muslims. My research was part of a broadly focused investigation of the impact of India’s Muslim Personal Law upon women’s well-being, begun in 1998 and on-going. I draw upon ethnographic and archival data collected between 1998 and 2001, as well as a recent review of the relevant case law. Widespread stereotypes represent Indian Muslim women as powerless to free themselves from unhappy marriages. However, they do have several legal options. One is to offer the husband a consideration for granting an extra-judicial divorce by khulʿ. This has distinct advantages over filing for divorce in a court of law. But its downside is that the husband must agree to release his wife from the marriage. Many refuse, others drive hard bargains or create other difficulties for the wife that are discussed in the essay.

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Erin E. Stiles

Abstract

Judicial khuluu (<Ar. khulʿ) in Zanzibar differs from judicial khulʿ in Arab countries that have recently introduced it through legislative reform. In Zanzibar’s Islamic courts, khuluu is used primarily as a judicial mechanism for ending a marriage when a judge determines a wife to be responsible for the breakdown of the marriage. Zanzibari women rarely file for khuluu because it is expensive and is associated with a woman’s failure in her marriage. Herein, I explain why judges in Zanzibar regard khuluu as a punitive measure that can be used to end a marriage when a woman is determined to be responsible for the marital discord, or when there are no grounds for judicial dissolution through fasikhi (<Ar. faskh, annulment).I also show that judges view khuluu as a right that a woman can exercise to extricate herself from marriage, a right that judges sometimes encourage in court.

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Esther Van Eijk

In this article, the author examines the ways in which a number of Dutch Muslim women try to obtain an Islamic divorce. The road to a divorce, often long and winding, does not always lead to a satisfactory conclusion. I explore the question of why it can be difficult for Muslim women to obtain a religious divorce. Drawing on recent empirical research into the phenomenon of ‘marital captivity’ – a situation in which someone is unable to terminate a (religious) marriage, I examine the case of a Dutch Muslim woman who, at the instigation of a civil court, managed to negotiate a khulʿ agreement with her ‘ex’-husband, who released her from the marital bond. This exceptional example of a khulʿ practice in the Netherlands attests to the versatility of this under-researched form of Islamic divorce and how it is used in a Muslim minority context in Europe.

Open Access

Nadia Sonneveld and Erin Stiles

Abstract

This special issue of Islamic Law and Society takes a close look at contemporary manifestations of an Islamic divorce procedure known as khulʿ. Studying khulʿ is not an easy matter, in large part because it is not exactly clear what khulʿ is. Is khulʿ consensual or non-consensual, judicial or extrajudicial, fault or no-fault based? Does khulʿ result in ṭalāq (unilateral repudiation by a husband), or is it an entirely different form of divorce? Is khulʿ initiated by wives or by husbands? As we will explain below, the answer to all of these questions is “yes,” as khulʿ is all of these things.

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Stijn Cornelis van Huis

Abstract

In this essay, I describe the historical development of three traditional fiqh-baseddivorce mechanisms in Indonesia that commonly result in a khul‘ divorce: regular khul‘ (khuluk), conditional divorce(taklik talak), and marital discord (syiqaq). In the practice of present-day Islamic courts these traditional fiqh-based divorce mechanisms have lost almost all of their former prominence. Through a historical analysis of legal practices offemale-initiated divorce, I will explain how this happened. Legal reforms under the 1974 Marriage Law, their adoption into the 1991 Compilation of Islamic Law, and case law of the Supreme Court broadened women’s divorce rights significantly. The same reforms made out-of-court divorce illegal. In contrast to fiqh-baseddivorce mechanisms, judicial divorce on the grounds of ‘continuous and irreconcilable marital discord’ does not require the consent of the husband or the payment of compensation and has therefore become an easier and cheaper option for Indonesian women.