Interpreting gender in Islam: a case study of immigrant Muslim women in Oslo, Norway

2011-10-27T13:34:45Z (GMT) by Line Nyhagen Predelli
This article explores variation in how immigrant Muslim women in Oslo, Norway, interpret and practice gender relations within the framework of Islam. Religion, family, and work are important sites for the formation, negotiation, and change of gender relations. The article therefore discusses the views and experiences of immigrant Muslim women concerning wife-husband relations and participation in the labor market. Four analytical types of views toward gender relations are introduced, and the variation in gender practices and views found among Muslim women in Oslo is discussed in relation to these types. The analysis suggests that immigrant Muslim women use Islam as a flexible resource for interpreting gender relations. It also shows that while women generally uphold a religious ideal of complementary gender roles, their actual practice often contradicts with and contests this ideal.