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The Politics of Women's Rights in Iran
Arzoo Osanloo

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"Osanloo's original argument is that despite official rejection by the Islamic Republic of a discourse of rights as Western, liberal notions of rights are almost hegemonic in Iran today. Through wonderful fieldwork in Tehran's family court, lawyers' offices, and even the Islamic Human Rights Commission, she reveals how this has come about. She analyzes not only the force of the international politics of rights for a country that tied women's status to national identity, but also the surprising ways that Iran's unique system of civic-religious law has produced women with a keen sense of themselves as rights-bearing subjects. This is legal anthropology at its best and an extraordinary contribution to Middle East gender studies."--Lila Abu-Lughod, author of Dramas of Nationhood: The Politics of Television in Egypt

"Struggles for women's rights in the Muslim world are too often seen as a simple conflict between Islam and modernity. Osanloo's illuminating study of postrevolutionary Iran shows how women have articulated a much richer approach to advancing their political rights. They have developed a repertoire of claims that draws simultaneously on the state's republican foundations, the ideology of Islamic government, and the discourse of international human rights. The book is a highly original and important contribution to our understanding of the politics of contemporary Iran and to global debates about the rights of women."--Timothy Mitchell, Columbia University

"Osanloo examines a topic of great significance: the way the Iranian legal system has developed since the revolution to incorporate both the former civil codes and the newer ideas of human rights in ways that benefit women. This will be a widely read and valuable book."--Sally E. Merry, New York University

"This engaging book is original and groundbreaking in providing analysis and understanding for one of the most talked about yet neglected areas of research in Iran, the Middle East, and the North African region. It will open new directions for further research with important practical implications for women and human rights, Islamic or otherwise."--Homa Hoodfar, Concordia University

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File created: 4/21/2017

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