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The emergence of islamist offical and unofficial laws in the erdoganist turkey: The case of child marriages

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journal contribution
posted on 01.01.2021, 00:00 authored by Ihsan YilmazIhsan Yilmaz
Religion in the hands of authoritarian governments can prove to be an effective political instrument to further their agenda. This paper attempts to explore this aspect of authoritarianism with the case of Turkish family laws under Erdoganist Islamist legal pluralism. The paper analyzes the AKP’s government’s attempts at pro-Islamist legislation, fatwas produced by Diyanet (Turkish Directorate of Religious Affairs) and by pro-government right-wing religious scholars to explore the changes that have occurred, both formally and informally, in the largely secular family laws of the Republic of Turkey in the last decade. By focusing on the age of marriage, this paper tries to understand the impact of Islamist legal pluralism and unofficial Islamist laws on the formal legal system as well as the social implications of this plural socio-legal reality, particularly for vulnerable groups such as the poor, refugees, children, and women. The trends demonstrate the informal system’s skew towards Islamism, patriarchy and disregard for fundamental rights. This Islamist legal plurality almost always operates against the women and underage girls, which creates profound individual and social problems. The paper concludes by pointing out the critical issues emerging in the domain of family law due to the link between the growing power of Islamist legal pluralism and its political instrumentalization by the Justice and Development Party (AKP).

History

Journal

Religions

Volume

12

Issue

7

Article number

513

Pagination

1 - 17

Publisher

MDPI

Location

Basel, Switzerland

eISSN

2077-1444

Language

eng

Publication classification

C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal