Since the 1979 Iranian Revolution, Iranian politics has conventionally been viewed as a polarized conflict between “secular” and “Islamic” ideologies. I argue that this view has masked the real battle, which has been between despotism and patriarchy, on the one hand, and democracy and feminism, on the other. The century-old struggle for democracy in Iran has been enmeshed in the dynamics of changing relations between sexuality, theology and politics. In this light I re-examine the course of the 2009 presidential elections and their aftermath.
Dr. Ziba Mir-Hosseini is a legal anthropologist, specializing in Islamic law, gender and development. She has a BA in Sociology from Tehran University (1974) and a PhD in Social Anthropology from University of Cambridge (1980). A Professorial Research Associate at the Centre for Middle Eastern and Islamic Law, University of London, she has held numerous research fellowships and visiting professorships, including Fellow of the Wissenschaftskolleg zu Berlin (2004-5), and Hauser Global Law Visiting Professor at New York University (2002-8). She is a founding member of the Musawah Global Movement for Equality and Justice in the Muslim Family. Her publications include "Marriage on Trial: A study of Islamic Family Law in Iran and Morocco" (I.B. Tauris, 1993, 2002), "Islam and Gender: The Religious Debate in Contemporary Iran" (Princeton University Press, 1999), "Islam and Democracy in Iran: Eshkevari and the Quest for Reform" (with Richard Tapper; I.B. Tauris, 2006), and "Control and Sexuality: the Revival of Zina Laws in Muslim Contexts" (with Vanja Hamzic; Women Living Under Muslim Laws, 2010). She has also directed (with Kim Longinotto) two award-winning feature-length documentary films on contemporary issues in Iran: "Divorce Iranian Style" (1998) and "Runaway" (2001).
Free and open to the public.
Lecture in English.