2018-03-30Zeitschriftenartikel DOI: 10.18452/19211
Law, religion and gender equality: literature on the Indian personal law system from a women’s rights perspective
This literature review seeks to portray the scholarship on the feminist critique and women’s activism vis-à-vis religion-based family law in India. The key question is: Which aspects of the Indian family law system are problematic from a women’s rights perspective and how can these aspects be addressed and reformed? The scholarship on this topic stems from three broad strands of literature: The first looks at family law and jurisprudence from a feminist perspective. It points to discriminatory aspects and suggests particular measures for reform. The second strand comprises studies of legal anthropologists on how women “on the ground” manoeuvre through the intricacies of state law, religious and cultural norms and claims for gender justice. It acknowledges that the Indian State practically shares its authority over law-making and adjudication with various other stakeholders. The third strand of literature is situated in the area of gender studies and deals with the Indian women’s movement’s activism vis-à-vis the personal laws.
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