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Contrary to popular perceptions, newly veiled women across the Middle East are just as much products and symbols of modernity as the upper- and middle-class women who courageously took off the veil almost a century ago. To make this point, these essays focus on the "woman question" in the Middle East (most particularly in Egypt and Iran), especially at the turn of the century, when gender became a highly charged nationalist issue tied up in complex ways with the West. The last two decades have witnessed an extraordinary burst of energy and richness in Middle East women's studies, and the contributors to this volume exemplify the vitality of this new thinking. They take up issues of concern to historians and social thinkers working on the postcolonial world. The essays challenge the assumptions of other major works on women and feminism in the Middle East by questioning, among other things, the familiar dichotomy in which women's domesticity is associated with tradition and modernity with their entry into the public sphere. Indeed, Remaking Women is a radical challenge to any easy equation of modernity with progress, emancipation, and the empowerment of women.
The contributors are Lila Abu-Lughod, Marilyn Booth, Deniz Kandiyoti, Khaled Fahmy, Mervat Hatem, Afsaneh Najmabadi, Omnia Shakry, and Zohreh T. Sullivan.The book is introduced by the editor with a piece called "Feminist Longings and Postcolonial Conditions," which masterfully interfaces the critical studies of feminism and modernism with scholarship on South Asia and the Middle East.
Note on Transliterations xi
Introduction. Lila Abu-Lughod: Feminist Longings and Postcolonial Conditions 3
PART ONE: REWRITING FEMINIST BEGINNINGS: THE NINETEENTH CENTURY 33
Chapter 1. Khaled Fahmy: Women, Medicine, and Power in Nineteenth-Century Egypt 35
Chapter 2. Mervat Hatem: 'A'isha Taymur's Tears and the Critique of the Modernist and the Feminist Discourses on Nineteenth-Century Egypt 73
PART TWO: MOTHERS, WIVES, AND CITIZENS: THE TURN OF THE CENTURY 89
Chapter 3. Afsaneh Najmabadi: Crafting an Educated Housewife in Iran 91
Chapter 4. Omnia Shakry: Schooled Mothers and Structured Play: Child Rearing in Turn-of-the-Century Egypt 126
Chapter 5. Marilyn Booth: The Egyptian Lives of Jeanne d'Arc 171
PART THREE: ISLAMISM, MODERNISM, AND FEMINISMS: THE LATE TWENTIETH CENTURY 213
Chapter 6. Zohreh T Sullivan. Eluding the Feminist, Overthrowing the Modem? Transformations in Twentieth-Century Iran 215
Chapter 7. Lila Abu-Lughod: The Marriage of Feminism and Islamism in Egypt: Selective Repudiation as a Dynamic of Postcolonial. Cultural Politics 243
Afterword. Deniz Kandiyoti: Some Awkward Questions on Women and Modernity in Turkey 270