JINEL's goal is to emphasize and critically analyze all legal issues—social, political, civil, historical, economic and commercial—that are of particular relevance to Muslims and Near Easterners in both Muslim and non-Muslim societies.
Volume 12, 2013
The Moroccan Personal Status Law and the Invention of Identity: A Case Study on the Relationship between Islam, Women, and the State
This paper uses Muslim women’s activism against Morocco’s Personal Status code as a case study to challenge widely held notions about the relationship between Islam and women’s rights, and to examine the production of religious knowledge in pursuit of political goals that directly affect women. Using women’s activism against Morocco’s Personal Status Code, I analyze the state’s use of religious symbols and religious discourse to affect constructions of gender in a bid for cultural, as well as political, hegemony. In so doing, I challenge the positioning of gendered citizenship as Islamic,” and tease out the connections between Morocco’s gendered citizenship framework, the political appropriation of religious discourse, and the construction of the “family” as a cultural phenomenon. Additionally, I explore women’s forms of protest, arguing that women’s use of Islamic discourse and jurisprudence was a successful strategy, problematizing the notion that Islam and progressivism are mutually exclusive frames. Finally, I link this particular case study to other examples of Islamic feminist activism in the Middle East in order to propose a lens for understanding the relationship between gender, the family, and the state in Muslim countries.
Turkey has improved its approach to interacting with children in conflict with the law over the past decade, moving closer to a system that ensures its children the opportunity to strive for a better future. This Article focuses on two promising Turkish reforms that hold potential to improve juvenile justice systems internationally, namely: open model incarceration and Turkey’s approach to diversion. This Article demonstrates how a child-centered juvenile justice system can improve public safety and outcomes for youth. It also addresses potential challenges to each model and identifies broader issues that may require reform.