File Name: faith and feminism in pakistan by afiya zia .zip
- Race, class, and agency: A return to Marxist feminism
- Volume 11, Issue 1 (2009) Gender and Islam in Asia
- Women’s Studies
- Faith and feminism in Pakistan
The debates around the popular drama serial, Meray Paas Tum Ho MPTH reflect the unresolved place of art, film and culture in Pakistan, especially on the themes of gender roles, sexuality, piety and modesty.
Race, class, and agency: A return to Marxist feminism
The feminist debate in Pakistan is not polarized simply into secular and so-called Islamic alternatives. Ishtiaq Ahmed. It is seldom that qualified research, conceptually and theoretically sophisticated informs the academic undertakings of Pakistani scholars.
This is especially lamentable when one reads works written supposedly by political scientists. Their contributions to information and knowledge are mostly political history. Other branches of social science are not much better.
Understanding society, its composition and structure, the cultural slants and religious biases of power are conspicuous by their absence from the Pakistani intellectual discourse.
Research produced by NGOs , a very prominent source of concerned and committed is rich in fact and enlightened insights but lack theoretical sophistication.
Fortunately, Afiya S. Zia has defied that tradition of under theorized or rather un theorized research, rich in experiences but seriously deficient in conceptual and theoretical clarity, which obtains in Pakistan on the exposed and vulnerable position of women in Pakistan. Islamic alternatives to democracy, sovereignty, equality, freedom, human rights and minority rights — when subjected to systematic and rigorous analysis invariably impede the incorporation of universal norms and values in the normative discourse on them in Pakistan.
Islamic feminists do the same with predictable consistency and constancy. Riffat Hassan set in motion passionate pleading for the rights of Muslim women not only in Pakistan but in international forums as well. Her line of argument was adopted by others who produced academic dissertations premised on cultural relativism, which called into question the universal claims of Western modernity. They propounded instead Islamic alternatives which they argued stand a greater chance of being accepted and internalized by Muslim men and women on grounds of cultural authenticity and Islamic sanction.
Rather a perverted form of Islamic feminism emerged in Pakistan under the leadership of Farhat Hashmi who has built influential global networks which uphold segregation of men and women and oppose women from entering the public sphere on grounds that Western modernity subverts piety and the sanctity of family life.
The argument is that Islam upholds the dignity of women higher than any other social philosophy or religion and secularism and modernism are the anti-thesis of the proper measure of rights of men and women. The Taliban Regime in Afghanistan which during — ,was an extension of such thinking to the sphere of politics, society and state. However, the feminist debate in Pakistan is not polarized simply into secular and so-called Islamic alternatives.
If that were so it would be an easy task to demonstrate the patently negative orientation of Islamic feminism. The methodology the author adopts to demonstrate her point of view is to contextualize the debates, discussions and controversies among Pakistani feminists on the life conditions of women in Pakistan from the time of General Muhammad Zia-ul-Haq when Islamization reforms consolidated traditional patriarchy with fundamentalist arguments justifying the subordination of women to men with concomitant pressure to vacate the public sphere.
That was the beginning of the activation of Pakistani women belonging mainly to the upper-class enlightened sections of Pakistani society. Equally, General Zia was an Islamist dictator. His reactionary reforms remain intact notwithstanding the restoration of elected civilian governments. Secularists in general and feminist secularists in particular face an uphill task in a state claimed and won in the name of Islam.
The so-called war on terror unleashed by President George W. Bush resulted in a determined reaction of Islamist extremism. Inevitably its worldwide repercussions impacted the rights and status of women in Pakistan. Harassment and intimidation of women become endemic to Pakistani politics and in some cases resulted in assassination of women, including a female minister.
Even more deplorable have been violent attacks on women working in the polio vaccination drives of the government. Author: Afiya S. Understandably, Pakistan feminists discussed and controverted the strategies needed to deal with an increasingly hostile environment. The author goes into interesting details of such discussions and controversies.
We learn about revisionists and post-secular feminists and other seeks refuge in patriarchy and culture finding anthropological arguments not to involve theology to explain why Pakistani women continue to suffer male hostility and aggression. The author makes a compelling case for holding on to secular feminism by exposing the ideational paucity and contradictions inherent in revisionist types of feminism. The book should be compulsory reading for feminist academics and NGO activists.
A question which the author does not deal with is to attempt an analysis of the limits on feminism, secular feminism, that an ideological state such has Pakistan imposes.
The fact of patriarchy is universal and in neighbouring India Hindu society continues to be constricting for women but following the Hindu Reform Laws of the Nehru Government in the s progressive reforms were enacted and have gone a long way in improving the rights status of Hindu women.
Volume 11, Issue 1 (2009) Gender and Islam in Asia
Afiya Shehrbano Zia. Are secular aims, politics, and sensibilities impossible, undesirable and impracticable for Muslims and Islamic states? Should Muslim women be exempted from feminist attempts at liberation from patriarchy and its various expressions under Islamic laws and customs? Many commentators critique "the secular" and "Western feminism," and the racialising backlash that accompanied the occupation of Muslim countries during the "War on Terror" military campaign launched by the U. Implicit in many of these critical works is the suggestion that it is Western secular feminism that is the motivating driver and permanent collaborator - along with other feminists, secularists and human rights activists in Muslim countries - that sustains the West's actual and metaphorical "war on Islam and Muslims. The relevance of secular feminist activism is illustrated with reference to some of the nation-wide, working-class women's movements that have surged throughout Pakistan under religious militancy: polio vaccinators, health workers, politicians, peasants and artists have been directly targeted, even assassinated, for their service and commitment to liberal ideals. Afiya Zia contends that Muslim women's piety is no threat against the dominant political patriarchy, but their secular autonomy promises transformative changes for the population at large, and thereby effectively challenges Muslim male dominance.
Brand, P. Feminism and Tradition in Aesthetics. Bettersby, C. Bloomington: Indiana University Press. Hashmi, Salima.
How to publish with Brill. Fonts, Scripts and Unicode.
Faith and feminism in Pakistan
The feminist debate in Pakistan is not polarized simply into secular and so-called Islamic alternatives. Ishtiaq Ahmed. It is seldom that qualified research, conceptually and theoretically sophisticated informs the academic undertakings of Pakistani scholars. This is especially lamentable when one reads works written supposedly by political scientists. Their contributions to information and knowledge are mostly political history. Other branches of social science are not much better.
Feminism - the philosophy and the movements it has inspired — is often unknown or largely misunderstood, not only for what its represents, but also its historical trajectory and development in Pakistan. Both Islamic and Secular Feminisms conceive of their politics as resistance to subordination of women, but employ different methodologies. Such docile pietiest agency is more internal, both in object and form. Zia also refers to the experience of the women in Swat who were initially drawn to the spiritedness of Maulana Fazaulullahs sermons, and supported his Tehreeq-e-Nifaz-e-Sharia-e-Muhammad, to realize only in hindsight that that the horrors and brutality inflicted against their family and community could not have been inspired by religion. She refers to the network of , Lady Health Workers LHWs who have challenged and re-negotiated traditional notions of gendered space and the public-private divide to provide basic healthcare to women across Pakistan.
PDF | On Jan 4, , Afiya S Zia published Faith and Feminism in Pakistan Religious Agency or Secular Autonomy? | Find, read and cite all.