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Reframing Secularist Premises: Divorce Among Traditional Muslim and Jewish Women within the Secular State

Reframing Secularist Premises: Divorce Among Traditional Muslim and Jewish Women within the Secular State
84 Queen's Park, Falconer Hall, Room FA2
Time: Jan 10th, 12:30 pm End: Jan 10th, 2:00 pm
Interest Categories: Women/Gender, Women & Gender Studies (FAS), Religion, Study of (FAS), Political Science, Law, Faculty of , Jewish Studies, Islamic Studies, Critical Theory, 2000-
Talk by Pascale Fournier, University of Ottawa Faculty of Law

The Faculty of Law presents

Critical Analysis of Law Workshop Series

presents 

Pascale Fournier
University of Ottawa Faculty of Law 

Reframing Secularist Premises:  Divorce Among Traditional Muslim and Jewish Women within the Secular State
(Pascale Fournier, University of Ottawa, Faculty of Law; Jacques Berlinerblau, Georgetown University,
Center for Jewish Civilization) 

Tuesday, January 10, 2017
12:30 – 2:00
Solarium (Room FA2), Falconer Hall
84 Queen’s Park

The past few decades have witnessed a significant increase in scholarly attention to the subject of secularism. This body of work, theoretical and normative in nature, rarely addresses ethnographic data and the lived experiences of situated agents. Starting with a review of three major theoretical approaches to the study of secularism (i.e., the rather under-theorized writings of the 19th century Freethinker George Jacob Holyoake, the research of scholars who work in post-Foucauldian traditions, and those who start from more traditional liberal assumptions about secularism as a political project), we ask how each of these theories interfaces with our own ethnographic discoveries. Our interviews with traditionalist Jewish and Muslim women seeking divorces in Canada, France, Germany, and the United Kingdom, challenge and complexify many of the assumptions that undergird each of the aforementioned theoretical schools. Our ethnography reveals interesting and unexpected patterns of women’s agency, religious critique, and navigation of parallel civil and religious structures. The behavior of our subjects calls attention to theoretical limitations of prevailing paradigms in secular studies and suggests intriguing avenues for future research.

A light lunch will be provided.

For more workshop information, please contact Nadia Gulezko at n.gulezko@utoronto.ca


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