Bahrain's tumultuous political landscape often overshadows the societal upheavals that this tiny country is facing. Sophia Pandya cuts through this to examine how international Islamic revivalism coupled with increased secular education has impacted Muslim women's religious practice and public position. She unsettles assumptions that education is a secularising force for Muslim women, showing that modern education among Bahraini women has in fact deepened both their engagement with Islam and their political participation. Uncovering what transpires when newly educated women have the opportunity to reinterpret religion and gain access to the work place and the political arena, Pandya sheds light on the complex intersections between women and public life, education and Islam. This book provides great insights into religious women's efforts towards self-determination within conservative Islamic movements as well as the impact of globalisation and wider economic and political developments in Bahrain.
Sophia Pandya has a PhD from the University of California at Santa Barbara and is Assistant Professor of Religious Studies at California State University, Long Beach.
Acknowledgements 1. Bahrain and Beyond its Shore 2. A Brief History of Bahrain since 1932 3. The Shi`i Ma'tam 4. A Qur'anic School for Sunni Women 5. Gulf Women's Stories about Life and Religion 6. Expatriate Muslim Women's Stories about Life and Religion 7. Thinking Big Notes Selected Bibliography Index