Marital Conflicts and Abuse

Julie Macfarlane

in Islamic Divorce in North America

Published in print April 2012 | ISBN: 9780199753918
Published online May 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780199949588 | DOI:
Marital Conflicts and Abuse

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This chapter draws on respondent interviews to describe and analyse the most frequently presented causes of marital conflict. The most consistent focus of conflict between spouses relates to different images of appropriate gender roles within the family. This conflict is played out in disputes over responsibility for household and childcare chores, work outside the home, and access to continuing education, as well as more general freedoms for married women. Many young couples, particularly women, describe the adjustments that their generation is making in the face of very different social conditions and expectations from their parents’ generation (and the absence of female role models). Other common conflicts reflect Islamic traditions, including arranged marriages, the taking of second wives or mistresses and relations with in-laws. The last part of the chapter is devoted to a discussion of cases in which domestic violence and emotional abuse were factors and examines the response of family, imams and the broader community to such allegations.

Keywords: marital conflict; divorce; gender; freedoms; domestic abuse; generational change; Islamic family traditions

Chapter.  17263 words. 

Subjects: Islam

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