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Adjudication in Religious Family Laws
Cultural Accommodation, Legal Pluralism, and Gender Equality in India

$118.00 (C)

Part of Cambridge Studies in Law and Society

  • Date Published: April 2011
  • availability: In stock
  • format: Hardback
  • isbn: 9781107006102

$ 118.00 (C)
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About the Authors
  • How do multireligious and multiethnic societies construct accommodative arrangements that can both facilitate cultural diversity and ensure women's rights? Based on a study of legal adjudication of marriage and divorce across formal and informal arenas in contemporary Mumbai, this book argues that the shared adjudication model in which the state splits its adjudicative authority with religious groups and other societal sources in the regulation of marriage can potentially balance cultural rights and gender equality. In this model the civic and religious sources of legal authority construct, transmit, and communicate heterogeneous notions of the conjugal family, gender relations, and religious membership within the interstices of state and society. In so doing, they fracture the homogenized religious identities grounded in hierarchical gender relations within the conjugal family. The shared adjudication model facilitates diversity as it allows the construction of hybrid religious identities, creates fissures in ossified group boundaries, and provides institutional spaces for ongoing intersocietal dialogue. This pluralized legal sphere, governed by ideologically diverse legal actors, can thus increase gender equality and individual and collective legal mobilization by women effects institutional change.

    • An original and far-reaching work, theoretically sophisticated while also solidly grounded in extensive first-hand ethnographic research
    • Unique in its multi-faceted approach and presents conclusions which contradict much of the 'received wisdom'
    • Addresses questions that are not only of theoretical interest to specialists in the field, but that also have practical policy implications
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    Product details

    • Date Published: April 2011
    • format: Hardback
    • isbn: 9781107006102
    • length: 438 pages
    • dimensions: 235 x 160 x 26 mm
    • weight: 0.57kg
    • contains: 4 b/w illus. 4 tables
    • availability: In stock
  • Table of Contents

    1. Introduction
    2. The shared adjudication model: theoretical framework and arguments
    3. State law and the adjudication process: marriage, divorce, and the conjugal family in Hindu and Muslim personal law
    4. Making and unmaking the conjugal family: the administration of Hindu law in society
    5. Juristic diversity, contestations over 'Islamic law' and women's rights: regulation of matrimonial matters in Muslim personal law
    6. Conclusion.

  • Author

    Gopika Solanki, Carleton University, Ottawa
    Gopika Solanki is Assistant Professor of Political Science at Carleton University in Canada. She is co-author of Journey from Violence to Crime: A Study of Domestic Violence in the City of Mumbai. She has contributed articles to various journals and books.

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