Saturday, March 3, 2007

Backing in to Women’s History Month?

The new free Paris daily Matin Plus reports that female Turkish students demonstrated in Istanbul on Feb. 28 to protest the ban on wearing headscarves in institutions of higher learning and called for sanctions against those who deposed the Islamist government 10 years ago. Meanwhile, the Kyrgyz Ministry of Justice has proposed to cancel criminal liability for polygamy (see here). Despite attempts over a number of years by the UN/CEDAW committee (see, for example, here and here) and other NGOs to help the Kyrgyz overcome traditional attitudes that maintain male dominance and allow rampant female violence (see the HRW report here), a return to “tradition” is seen as necessary to redress the imbalance of the sexes due to a mass exodus of men seeking work. Better, perhaps, to place an order with the Japanese, who have developed a robot that can serve tea…and wash the teacups!

For more on religion and women’s rights, read Madhavi Sunder’s 2003 article, "Piercing the Veil."

No comments: