The identity of Muslim women in South Africa : married couples' perspectives.

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dc.contributor.author Sader, Farzana
dc.date.accessioned 2009-03-04T08:43:14Z
dc.date.available 2009-03-04T08:43:14Z
dc.date.issued 2009-03-04T08:43:14Z
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/10539/6611
dc.description.abstract The present study provides an understanding of how married, tertiary educated and employed Muslim females negotiate their identities across contexts within a multicultural environment, such as post-1994 contemporary Johannesburg. An additional facet of this study was to gain insight into the construction of Muslim female identity by the husbands of the women in the study. The commonly portrayed images of Muslim women are unflattering and ill-conceived and depict the Muslim woman as one who is veiled, oppressed, secluded and submissive. In South Africa however, Muslim women have been able to participate in secular education and employment opportunities and practice their religion within a democratic dispensation that is responsive to issues of gender. In order to obtain an understanding of the nuances that underpin Muslim female self-constructions and constructions by their husbands, the study was approached from a social constructionist epistemology. It is the assumption of the researcher that identities are thus in part created discursively, and for the purpose of this study, the constructions of identity of the participants were analysed using a discourse analysis methodology. Interviews were conducted with four Muslim couples. Social facets such as gender, race, religion and globalisation were used as topics in order to understand how participants constructed Muslim women’s identity. The Muslim women who participated in the study appear to inhabit different subject positions in their daily lives. The study highlighted that identity may not be fixed or stable, rather a function of relational or contextual positions. Both the women and men in this study emphasised an Islamic identification while distancing themselves from a cultural identification. The oppression of Muslim women was relegated to the realm of culture. In prioritising an Islamic identity the participants have created a space where they are able to construct an alternative identity for Muslim women that enables them these women the freedom to access secular spaces or what may be viewed as the public sphere of men. en
dc.language.iso en en
dc.subject Muslim women en
dc.subject Muslim couples en
dc.subject Identity construction en
dc.subject Social constructionism en
dc.title The identity of Muslim women in South Africa : married couples' perspectives. en
dc.type Thesis en


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