There has been a widespread resurgence of rights talk in social and legal discourses pertaining to the regulation of family life, as well as an increase in the use of rights in family law cases, in the UK, the US, Canada and Australia. Rights, Gender and Family Law addresses the implications of these developments – and, in particular, the impact of rights-based approaches upon the idea of welfare and its practical application. There are now many areas of family law in which rights and welfare based approaches have been forced together. But whilst, to many, they are premised upon different ethics – respectively, of justice and of care – for others, they can nevertheless be reconciled. In this respect, a central concern is the 'gender-blind' character of rights-based approaches, and the ontological and practical consequences of their employment in the gendered context of the family. Rights, Gender and Family Law explores the tensions between rights-based and welfare-based approaches: explaining their differences and connections; considering whether, if at all, they are reconcilable; and addressing the extent to which they can advantage or disadvantage the interests of women, children and men. It may be that rights-based discourses will dominate family law, at least in the way that social policy and legislation respond to calls of equality of rights between mothers and fathers. This collection, however, argues that rights cannot be given centre-stage without thinking through the ramifications for gendered power-relations, and the welfare of children. It will be of interest to researchers and scholars working in the fields of family law, gender studies and social welfare.
Islamic family law has an immediate and direct impact on the lives of Muslim men, women and children, whose personal status continues to be defined by understandings of Islamic law codified and adapted by modern nation-states. This book examines how male authority is sustained through law and court practice, the consequences for women and the family, and the demands made by Muslim women's groups. Examining the construction of male guardianship (qiwama, wilaya) in the Islamic tradition, it also seeks to create an argument for women's full equality before the law. Bringing together renowned Muslim scholars and experts, anthropologists who have carried out fieldwork in family courts, and human rights and women's rights activists from different parts of the Muslim world, from Morocco to Egypt and Iran, this book develops a framework for rethinking Islamic Law and its traditions in ways that reflect contemporary realities and understandings of justice and gender rights.
The third edition of this work on family law, comprising text, cases and materials, provides not only an explication of legal principle but also explores, primarily from a feminist perspective, some of the assumptions about, and constructions of, gender, sexual orientation, class and culture that underlie the law. It examines the ideology of the family and, in particular, the role of the law in contributing to and reproducing that ideology. Structured around the themes of equality, welfare, and family privacy, the book aims to offer the benefits of a textbook while also giving students a wide-ranging set of materials for classroom discussion. As well as providing a firm grounding in family law, the text sets the law in its social and historical context and encourages a critical approach by students to the subject. It provides an ideal introduction to family law for undergraduates, but will be equally helpful for postgraduate students of family law for whom it provides a challenging selection of materials set within a theoretical framework rich in ideas and arguments. Review of the second edition: 'Diduck and Kaganas examine legal developments to shed light on society, principally by investigating the ways in which family law constructs and regulates family life and responsibilities. Theirs is an important and ambitious book that aims ultimately at a feminist restatement of family law. .... [T]he [book] is written and referenced in such depth that it is a useful resource for legal as well as social science researchers at all levels, whether looking for theoretical inspiration or drawing up a literature review. The range of diverse sources that Diduck and Kaganas draw on is impressive: they seem to have included every bit of material that helps feminists make sense of family law. There is a well-pitched selection of further reading of such material at the end of each chapter. What's more, they undersell themselves by describing their book as "Text, Cases and Materials", because they have woven by far the largest proportion of the cases and materials into the text.' Helen Reece, Times Higher Education, May 2007. Reviews of first edition: 'A stimulating work which attempts to situate family law in its social, historical and political context. Its appeal should not be confined to family law students, as its commitment to a critical and analytical approach offers insights and ideas with broader significance.' Mary Childs, Child and Family Law Quarterly, September 2002 'The arguments are provocative, the analysis is stimulating and the materials amassed strongly support the authors' aim to question the "axiomatic status of what is traditionally designated as the family".' Fiona E Raitt, Infant and Child Development, September 2002 'It is not often that one can say of a textbook in Law that it "makes interesting reading" with quite the enthusiasm that can be expressed for this text. This new publication offers something that few textbooks seem to offer - a book you CAN open up virtually anywhere and find an interesting piece on almost any aspect of the broad family law spectrum.' Penny Booth, The Law Teacher, September 2002 'All the major themes in feminist and constructionist perspectives in family law are presented together with a wealth of readings and extensive references. As a teaching manual, it is excellent - a coherent feminist perspective across the entire range of family law' Marty Slaughter, Feminist Legal Studies, July 2003
Using original empirical data and critiquing existing research, Samia Bano explores the experience of British Muslim woman who use Shari'ah councils to resolve marital disputes. She challenges the language of community rights and claims for legal autonomy in matters of family law showing how law and community can empower as well as restrict women.
Women constitute a large portion of the economically active population engaged in agriculture. International instruments on human rights, the environment and sustainable development reaffirm the principle of non-discrimination on the basis of sex or gender. Yet women often face gendered obstacles in realizing their rights and feeding their families. The right to an adequate standard of living, including adequate food, may thus not be fulfilled. These obstacles may stem from directly or indirectly discriminatory norms or from entrenched socio-cultural practices, or both. This study analyses the gender dimension of agriculture-related legislation in a selection of different countries around the world, examining the legal status of women in three key areas: rights to land and other natural resources; rights of women agricultural workers; and rights concerning women's agricultural self-employment activities, ranging from women's status in rural cooperatives to their access to credit, training and extension services.
Recently, new methods of dispute resolution in matters of family law-such as arbitration, mediation, and conciliation-have created new forms of legal culture that affect minority communities throughout the world. There are now multiple ways of obtaining restitution through nontraditional alternative dispute resolution (ADR) mechanisms. For some, the emergence of ADRs can be understood as part of a broader liberal response to the challenges presented by the settlement of migrant communities in Western liberal democracies. Questions of rights are framed as "multicultural challenges" that give rise to important issues relating to power, authority, agency, and choice. Underpinning these debates are questions about the doctrine and practice of secularism, citizenship, belonging, and identity. Gender and Justice in Family Law Disputes offers insights into how women's autonomy and personal decision-making capabilities are expressed via multiple formal and nonformal dispute-resolution mechanisms, and as part of their social and legal lived realities. It analyzes the specific ways in which both mediation and religious arbitration take shape in contemporary and comparative family law across jurisdictions. Demarcating lines between contemporary family mediation and new forms of religious arbitration, Bano illuminates the complexities of these processes across multiple national contexts.