Category Archives: Middle East

IMER lunch seminar 13.06: Mahr in Norway – the sale of a woman or a legal right?

Our last lunch seminar this semester: Now re-announced with a new date!

Mahr (the Muslim dower) is regarded as obligatory to Muslim marriages. This means that when a Muslim man marries a Muslim woman, he provides her with a certain financial gift. However, this arrangement is controversial. Does Mahr entail the “sale” of a woman in a Muslim marriage? Because of such concerns, marriage rituals that contain mahr are not approved by the Norwegian state, as they are seen as contravening “Norwegian law and general gender equality principles”.

But does mahr merely entail the “sale” of a woman, or can it serve other purposes as well?

In this seminar, the lived experiences of Norway’s regulation of mahr will be examined. Building on a study of the Iranian diaspora in Norway, Marianne Bøe will explore the forms that mahr can take in contemporary Norwegian society. In her study, Bøe has conducted interviews with members of the Iranian diaspora, and has also studied documents relevant for Norway’s marriage ritual regulation. Does the present regulation of mahr contribute to safeguarding gender equality and the rights of women, or does it have other unintended effects?

The seminar takes place at seminar room 112 at Adm. org, Christies gate 17, on Wednesday 13th of June, from 12.30 to 14.00. A light lunch will be served,

All are welcome!

Marianne Bøe is a postdoctoral researcher at the Department of Archeology, History, Cultural Studies and Religion (AHKR) at UiB.

Lunch seminar 20.09 with Maja Janmyr: Labelling Syrian refugees in Lebanon

ATTENTION: NEW DATE

The war in Syria has created a large flow of refugees into Lebanon. Maja Janmyr from the faculty of law at UiB has recently conducted a prolonged fieldwork among Syrian refugees in Lebanon. She joins IMER for our first lunch seminar this semester, in order to present some findings.

In this seminar, Janmyr will explore the various legal, bureaucratic and social labels that get attached to the refugees by humanitarian, state and local government actors. A wide array of labels are imposed; registered refugee, laborer, displaced, foreigner, and more. These labels carry with them implications for what a Syrian may do, and how her presence is understood by others in the community. The labels also influence what type of rights and protections she may have access to. Importantly, the emergence of labels in one arena often influences how and why another set of labels takes shape in another.

The seminar takes place at the seminar room at the ground floor of Sosiologisk institutt, Rosenberggaten 39, between 12.30 and 14.00. A lunch will be served.

Welcome!

Maja Janmyr is a postdoctoral fellow at the Faculty of Law at the University of Bergen.