Writing Women’s Worlds-Chapter 5

I thought that the whole book was interesting and informative. I liked that each chapter started with a quote from the Qur’an. I found it interesting that Migdim’s granddaughter Kamla used her religion to make counter arguements with her family in regards to her arranged marriage. Her other young family members used, what I would describe as, logical arguments against a potential cousin marriage. On page 212 even Migdim admits that the cousin in question won’t marry Kamla because “She’s older than he is!”. However, Kamla retorts with sayings like, “it’s up to God to decide not father or me!” or “the Prophet says that it is wrong to marry someone you have never seen.”

I found Kamla’s essay to be very insightful. For me, the section about how people had to hide their emotions from each other seemed to be very similar to dating culture here. There are very few people that I know of personally that speaks of their feelings outright. It’s almost like a taboo in both cultures. Of course, the consequences in Kamla’s writings and retellings seems to be much harsher than any consequences here. Another comparison I found is that the section on Kamla’s features of piety. I think they represent the moral code that most societies have. Respect one another, the importance of family, being generous to others, and adherence to traditions.

My question is, do you think Lila Abu-Lughod succeeded in depicting the Bedouin world without the Western Feminist judgement? Did her writings change your view of the strict Muslim world?

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