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Reading: Motherhood as Constructed by Us: Muslim Women’s Negotiations from a Space That Is Their Own

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Motherhood as Constructed by Us: Muslim Women’s Negotiations from a Space That Is Their Own

Author:

Sariya Mary Cheruvallil-Contractor

Coventry University, GB
About Sariya
Sariya Cheruvallil-Contractor is sociologist at the Centre Trust, Peace and Social Relations, Coventry University, UK. She specialises in the Sociology of Religion with particular emphasis on democratic research methodologies that seek to work with and for research participants. She is the author of Muslim Women in Britain: Demystifying the Muslimah (Routledge 2012), co-author of Religion or Belief, Discrimination and Equality: Britain in Global Contexts (Bloomsbury 2013) and Islamic Education in Britain: New Pluralist Paradigms (Bloomsbury 2015) and co-editor Digital Methodologies in the Sociology of Religion (Bloomsbury 2015).
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Abstract

According to foundational Islamic texts, motherhood is a key aspect of women’s diverse social roles; however some Muslim religious commentaries position motherhood as the only aspect of women’s contributions to society. The everyday mothering experiences of Muslim women remain absent from these discussions. This anthropological article will examine Muslim women’s narratives of motherhood and mothering in contemporary Britain. In my research, Muslim women in Britain chose motherhood, firstly, as one of the many fronts on which to challenge patriarchy that is evident in some Muslim texts and to thus ‘reclaim their faith’ as articulated in foundational Islamic texts. Secondly, in their mothering experiences, Muslim women found a space of commonality that they shared with other women – motherhood was something these Muslim women believed they shared with their ‘sisters’ who were from backgrounds different to their own. Within their diverse and multifaceted struggles, Muslim women thus identified a space which they share with other women.

DOI: http://doi.org/10.18352/rg.10126
How to Cite: Cheruvallil-Contractor, S.M., (2016). Motherhood as Constructed by Us: Muslim Women’s Negotiations from a Space That Is Their Own. Religion and Gender. 6(1), pp.9–28. DOI: http://doi.org/10.18352/rg.10126
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Published on 20 Jun 2016.
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