This event takes place in person at Charis and on crowdcast, Charis' virtual event platform. This event is free, but registration is required for virtual attendance. Click here to register to attend virtually. Please read the in-person event guidelines at the bottom of this page to be sure you can participate in the event.
Charis and Agnes Scott College welcome Dr. Mona Tajali in conversation with Dr. Roshan Iqbal for a discussion of Women's Political Representation in Iran and Turkey: Demanding a Seat at the Table. How have women in many Muslim-majority countries been able to achieve surprising success despite the significant constraints imposed by conservative gender ideology and authoritarian political parties and systems? The themes of the book are vital to our understanding of political representation among women in Turkey and Iran, and also hold lessons for our own lack of representation in the United States. This event is co-sponsored by the Agnes Scott College Middle East Studies, Human Rights, Political Science, Women's Gender and Sexuality Studies, and International Relations Departments.
Through a comparative focus on Iran and Turkey, Mona Tajali examines the activities and strategies of women’s rights groups across the ideological spectrum. She explores how various groups have negotiated with political elites in order to bolster female political representation and identifies the conditions that stimulate greater support to ease women’s path to political office. Studying how women’s groups manoeuvre within these structures is important to help our understanding of the gendered politics of autocratic regimes.
The Agnes Scott College and Charis Communities are invited to a reception of light snacks and beverages on the front porch of Charis Books & More beginning at 6:30 pm. Seating for the program begins at 7pm and masks are required at all times indoors. The program will begin promptly at 7:30 pm.
Mona Tajali is Associate Professor of International Relations and Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies at Agnes Scott College. Her areas of expertise are gender and politics, human rights, and social movements in Muslim countries. She is the author of Women’s Political Representation in Iran and Turkey: Demanding a Seat at the Table (Edinburgh University Press 2022), which investigates how religious and cultural norms, attitudes, institutional structures, and voter behavior affect the representation of women and quality of democracy in Muslim contexts, with a comparative focus on Iran and Turkey. Her first book, Electoral Politics: Making Quotas Work for Women, co-authored with Homa Hoodfar, has been translated into Persian and Arabic, and is widely used as a training manual for those advocating for women’s increased political representation across the Muslim world. She publishes her research findings in both academic and popular outlets, among them, the Middle East Journal, Politics & Gender, Journal of Women, Politics and Policy, The Conversation, Jadaliyya, and The Nation. Tajali has also been a long-term collaborator with the research wing of the transnational feminist solidarity network, Women Living Under Muslim Laws (WLUML) and as of 2019, serves as member of their executive board.
Dr. Roshan Iqbal hails from a small hamlet of 20 million–Karachi, Pakistan. She received her PhD in Islamic Studies from Georgetown University. Prior to this she read for her MPhil at the University of Cambridge. She has studied in Pakistan, the US, Morocco, Egypt, Jordon, the UK, and Iran. Her research interests include gender and sexuality in the Qur’an, Islamic Law, Film and Media Studies, and modern Muslim intellectuals. Her forthcoming book is titled, Marital and Sexual Ethics in Islamic Law: Rethinking Temporary Marriage. As an associate professor at Agnes Scott College, she teaches classes in the Religious Studies department and also classes that are cross-listed with Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies and Film Studies. When she is not working, she loves talking to her family and friends on the phone (thank you, unlimited plans), tracking fashion (sartorial flourishes are such fun), watching films (love! love! love!), reading novels (never enough), painting watercolors (less and less poorly), and cooking new dishes (sometimes successfully).
This event is free and open to all people, especially to those who have no income or low income right now, but we encourage and appreciate a solidarity donation in support of the work of Charis Circle, our programming non-profit. Charis Circle's mission is to foster sustainable feminist communities, work for social justice, and encourage the expression of diverse and marginalized voices. https://donatenow.networkforgood.org/CharisCircle?code=chariscirclepage
In-person event guidelines:
All attendees must wear a face mask at all times inside the building
We will begin seating people at 7 pm ET.
Open source copies of the book are available for students and community readers. Institutional copies are available for order from Charis.
This event will be live-streamed via crowdcast. Click here to register to attend virtually.
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How have women in many Muslim-majority countries been able to achieve surprising success despite the significant constraints imposed by conservative gender ideology and authoritarian political parties and systems? Through a comparative focus on Iran and Turkey, Mona Tajili examines the activities and strategies of women's rights groups across the ideological spectrum.
By revealing ambiguities in the interpretation of mut'a, this work challenges accepted sexual ethics in Islamic thought--as presented by most classical and many modern Muslim scholars--and thus opens up space to theorize Islamic sexual ethics anew and contribute to this crucial conversation from the perspective of Muslim feminism.