Sharia and the out-of-this-world archbishop

I was doing a favour and flicking around the feminist blogosphere and found there seems to be surprisingly little on the Archbishop of Canterbury and his suggestion that the UK introduce aspects of sharia law. I suspect that may be because the whole thing is so obviously horrifying that it is hard to say anything about it.

No, I’m not falling for the “he means stoning and the chopping off of hands” of the tabloids; Rowan Williams is talking about family law, but just how you could consider introducing a law that allows men to divorce just with a few words, but makes it exceedingly hard for women, that simply shows women far less respect?

One of the lines being run by the “I’m being terribly reasonable” commentators is that a similar system with the Jewish community, known as Beth Din, works fine – except of course it doesn’t, forcing Jewish women who wish to remain within their faith community into horrendous situation, making many of them what are known as “chained women”, and forcing the secular law into complicate wriggles in an attempt to extract them.

Religious laws are misogynous. They were designed to keep women repressed under patriarchy. They do not belong in the 21st century.

Simple, and obvious, but I fear that it must be said – and said loudly and often.


  • February 10, 2008 - 6:47 pm | Permalink

    My book review from last week seems more relevant than ever. I intend to make the special topic for the 27th February Carnival of the Feminists Women and Mulitculturalism, but am too clogged up with the cold and generally run down from fatigue that I don’t have the energy right now. I have to say that I am both surprised and disappointed by the relative silence on the issue amongst feminists – if ever there was an issue we ought to be responding to this is it! I nominated this post for this week’s Britblog Roundup 🙂

  • Pingback: Britblog Roundup 11 February 2008: Ideas for Avoiding the Archbishop | The Wardman Wire

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  • February 12, 2008 - 3:23 pm | Permalink

    Yes, but it’s taken a long time to get us to where we are today, and even that is not quite far enough.

    Expecting others to catch up overnight is a tad optimistic.

  • Pingback: 54th Carnival of Feminists « In a strange land

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