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NCJ Number: 201707 Find in a Library
Title: Muslim Women's Safety Talk and Their Experiences of Victimisation: A Study Exploring Specificity and Difference (From Islam, Crime and Criminal Justice, P 50-75, 2002, Basia Spalek, ed. -- See NCJ-201704)
Author(s): Basia Spalek
Date Published: 2002
Page Count: 26
Sponsoring Agency: Willan Publishing
Portland, OR 97213-3644
Sale Source: Willan Publishing
c/o ISBS, 5804 N.E. Hassalo Street
Portland, OR 97213-3644
United States of America
Type: Survey (Cross-Cultural)
Format: Book (Hardbound)
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This chapter presents the results of a study that explored the fear of crime and experiences of crime of a group of Muslim women of Pakistani, Bangladeshi, and Indian origin living in Birmingham who wear the Hijab.
Abstract: The chapter begins with a discussion of the research on fear of crime and notes that the issue of religion has often been ignored because people’s beliefs do not easily fit into a framework that seeks to be so-called “objective” and “rational.” A recent study on religious discrimination found that interviewees who were members of minority ethnic groups often felt that in practice religious and racial discrimination were not separable, yet individuals whose appearance was an expression of their faith (Muslim women and Sikh men) were able to establish clear differences between the two. In this study, the research focused on three main structures impacting upon the women’s experiences: race, religion, and gender. Ten Muslim women who wear the Hijab were interviewed about their personal safety, their views on crime, and any experiences of victimization. The women were between the ages of 19 and 30, and the interviews took place between May 2001 and December 2001. Results of the study indicate the importance of veiling (wearing the Hijab) in Islam and to the women’s self-identity. The Hijab was regarded by the women as being liberating since it freed them from the male (sexual) gaze and subsequently reduced the level of harassment from men, and it incorporated social and theological expectations of how the Good Woman should behave so as to reduce the risk of being the victim of male violence, implying that women are responsible for men’s behavior. The study also found that many of the women had been the victims of a wide variety of offenses, including race attacks, religious abuse, car theft, burglary, and domestic violence. In looking at the process of victimization of these women, the study found that the religion practiced by them acted as a support mechanism and, at the same time, was a focus of abuse. As the study points out, religion can be a part of the everyday lives of individuals, and so may be intimately connected to the ways in which people experience crime and the ways in which they manage their personal safety. 2 notes and 65 references
Main Term(s): Victimization
Index Term(s): Cultural influences; Religion; Religiously motivated violence; United Kingdom (UK)
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