Like all the elites of post-Soviet Muslim countries, the political elite and religious officials in Russia have been in the search of a moderate and strictly national Islamic identity, to keep the Muslim population of Russia separate from Arab or Turkish versions of Islam that could be politicised and thus had the potential to undermine the state structure. ‘Tatar traditional Islam’ emerged through this framework.
From Flexibility to Protection
'Urf, Shar'ia and State Law
Gideon M. Kressel and Khalil Abu-Rabi'a
The practice of men swapping daughters for wives or nieces as daughters-in-law is evident among the Bedouin. Although this pattern has its roots in ancient Arab culture and is a unique exception to theories of exchange marriage (EM), there is little reference to the circumstances of its occurrence in the anthropological literature. This article reviews the background of and suggests explanations for this practice. EM is shown to be a strategy that largely serves the desire for upward mobility of small and hence lowly graded groups of agnates. The article demonstrates how EM operates in an olden 'urfi setting, dominated by patrilineages, while shar'i courts tend to oppose it. We argue that, although it entails structural implications, this behavioural pattern does not have a structural end.
Modernity believed that processes of secularization and rationalization are universally applicable. What is taking place in the 21st century, however, suggests that the reverse, a process of de-secularization, is becoming the hallmark of the present age. In the case of Islamic civilization, in which law is shari'a, the challenge to secularization takes the form of a process of shari'atization. This is not the traditional or inherited shari'a, restricted to civil matters and to a penal code, but an invented shari'a, one which also claims to be a constitutional law. Moreover, the constructed shari'atized constitutional law, in conflict with secular constitutionalism and appearing to offer no middle way, has been universalized to engender an international conflict between secularization and de-secularization. Since, for most Muslims, Islam without shari'a is unthinkable, this article examines the potential for religious reform of the shari'a in the direction of cultural change, freedom and democratic constitutionalism.
Arab scholarship of sexuality is currently emerging against many obstacles. This article provides a suggestive introduction to the current state of knowledge in the area. After briefly sketching an archetype of Arab sexuality, especially its peculiar form of phallocracy, new sexual trends are reviewed, some of which adapt current practices to Shari'a law (e.g., visitation marriages), while others break with it altogether (e.g., prostitution). The article then discusses three distinctive areas of public and policy concerns in the region, namely, honor killings, impotence and Viagra use, and sex-education programs that are precipitated by concerns over HIV/AIDS. The essay concludes with an assessment of some of the main challenges still facing research into the topic in the Arab Islamic world.
In imagining Indonesia’s future, its character as a country with the world’s largest Islamic population emerges as a critical issue. In the post-Suharto period, some commentators have seen the emergence of Islamist politics as a threat to newly attained freedoms. No sooner had women been freed from the constraints of ‘state ibuism’, i.e., the official policy promoting the role of wife and mother (ibu) of the New Order (see Suryakusuma 1996), which endorsed patriarchal familism as a cornerstone of authoritarian politics, than they faced a new kind of patriarchal authority in the demands for the enactment of shari’a as state law. For example, during her 2005 visit to Australia, Indonesian feminist commentator Julia Suryakusuma raised the specter of Islam as the greatest current threat to gender equity and to women as social actors in civic life, whose rights in the domestic sphere are now protected by the state. The growing influence of Middle Eastern Islam in Indonesia, evidenced by funding for organizations, translations of publications, and the increase in Islamist rhetoric, has caused alarm among many observers. This apprehension draws on the stereotype of the Middle East as the source of all that is ‘bad’ about Islam, taken as an undifferentiated whole. But this view of Islam fails to acknowledge debates within Islam and diversity in Islamic practice, not the least of which are the varieties of Islam that can be found throughout the Indonesian archipelago. These diverse practices have emerged as local communities and indigenous polities responded in distinctive and often unique ways during the long period of Islamic conversion, beginning from the thirteenth century.
Reinventing Anthropological Topics
, judges, tribal sheikhs, Islamic leaders, fighters and refugees. Her problem, which she poses very clearly, is the opposing views of secular persons and those upholding shari'a laws and regulations. It is very good that this problem, which is felt all
), please do get in touch with us to discuss! Books currently available and awaiting review include the following: Bowen , J. R. ( 2016 ), On British Islam: Religion, Law, and Everyday Practice in Shari'a Councils ( Princeton, NJ : Princeton
. ( 2016 ), On British Islam: Religion, Law, and Everyday Practice in Shari'a Councils ( Oxford : Princeton University Press ). Chorev , N. ( 2019 ), Give and Take: Developmental Foreign Aid and the Pharmaceutical Industry in East Africa ( Oxford
Educational Resources ). Video Resource. Bowen , J. R. ( 2016 ), On British Islam: Religion, Law, and Everyday Practice in Shari'a Councils ( Oxford : Princeton University Press ). De La Piedra , M. , B. Araujo , and A. Esquinca ( 2018
Borderless World ( New York : Berghahn Books ). 10.2307/j.ctt9qdb3w Bowen , J. R. ( 2016 ), On British Islam: Religion, Law, and Everyday Practice in Shari’a Councils ( Oxford : Princeton University Press ). Bregnbæk , S. ( 2016 ), Fragile Elite