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A History of Women's Seclusion in the Middle East : The Veil in the Looking Glass - J. Dianne Garner

A History of Women's Seclusion in the Middle East

The Veil in the Looking Glass

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Learn how the seclusion of women can be used as a feminist defense against exploitation--and as an empowering forceInternationally acclaimed author Ann Chamberlin's book, A History of Women's Seclusion in the Middle East: The Veil in the Looking Glass is a critical interdisciplinary examination of the practice of seclusion of women throughout the Middle East from its beginnings. This challenging exploration discusses the reasons that seclusion may not be as oppressive as is presently generally accepted, and, in fact, may be an empowering force for women in both the West and East. Readers are taken on a controversial, belief-bending journey deep into the surprising origins and diverse aspects of female seclusion to find solid evidence of its surprising use as a defense against monolithic cultural exploitation. The author uses her extensive knowledge of Middle Eastern culture, language, and even archeology to provide a convincing assertion challenging the Western view that seclusion was and is a result of women's oppression. A History of Women's Seclusion in the Middle East goes beyond standard feminist rhetoric to put forth shocking notions on the real reasons behind women's seclusion and how it has been used to counteract cultural exploitation. The book reviews written evidence, domestic and sacred architecture, evolution, biology, the clan, the environment for seclusion, trade, capital and land, slavery, honor, and various other aspects in a powerful feminist argument that seclusion is actually a valuable empowering force of protection from the influence of today's society. The text includes thirty black and white figures with useful descriptions to illustrate and enhance reader understanding of concepts.A History of Women's Seclusion in the Middle East discusses at length: prehistoric evidence of seclusion the sense of honor in the Middle East a balanced look at the Islamic religion the true nature of the harem the reasons for the oppression by the Taliban the positive aspects of 'veiling' seclusion as a defense against capitalist exploitation" and other challenging perspectives "A History of Women's Seclusion in the Middle East is thought-provoking, insightful reading for all interested in women's history, feminism, and the history and culture of the Middle East.

Forewordp. ix
Acknowledgmentsp. xiii
Introductionp. 1
Seclusion at Workp. 5
Examplesp. 8
A Return to the Talibanp. 23
Ancient Veilingp. 27
Artistic Representationp. 27
Written Evidencep. 30
Domestic Architecturep. 39
Architecture: The Sacredp. 57
In the Sacred Storehousep. 57
Sacred Pegsp. 61
"HRM"p. 64
Balance in the Paleolithic: Sacred Time, Space, and Personsp. 69
Evolutionp. 77
Biologyp. 85
The Clanp. 91
Environment for Seclusionp. 99
Tradep. 107
Capital and Landp. 113
The British Parallel: Enclosurep. 115
Liberation of the Individualp. 123
The Hunger for the Individualp. 124
The Urban Mesopotamian Clanp. 127
How Mesopotamian Culture Effected Individual Alienationp. 129
The Personal Godp. 130
Cities of Powerp. 135
Vernacular Genderp. 149
Slaveryp. 157
Honorp. 169
Masscultp. 181
Women's Tonguep. 191
For Men Onlyp. 203
The Fate of Seclusion in the Westp. 217
Conclusionp. 229
Notesp. 239
Bibliographyp. 263
Indexp. 289
Table of Contents provided by Ingram. All Rights Reserved.

ISBN: 9780789029843
ISBN-10: 0789029847
Series: Innovations in Feminist Studies
Audience: Tertiary; University or College
Format: Paperback
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 316
Published: 12th October 2006
Country of Publication: US
Dimensions (cm): 21.59 x 15.88  x 1.27
Weight (kg): 0.41
Edition Number: 1