Tabari - ~p Women at a demonstration in Tehran after the revolution R andy Goodman Azar Tabari n e unique and striking feature of the Iranian

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Women at a demonstration in Tehran after the revolution. ~p Randy Goodman The Enigma -7 +"- Veiled Azar Tabari 0 ne unique and striking feature of the Iranian revolution, from the very beginning, was the mass participation of women in the street mobilizations. Never before in the modern history of Iran. -ished not only by their vast numbers, but also by the fact that the women were, for the greatest part, v& C-er always at hand to be offered to unveiled women, who felt obliged to accept them in order toindicate their solidarity with the majority and to avoid what, at the time, seemed to be squabbling over minor details. It was not a minor detail. Less than a month after amng felt uneasy about clerical pronouncements on women's rights under Islam, planned actions, rallies and speeches for the first celebration in Iran of International Women's Day on March 8, 1979. They were already outraged by the first direct attacks against women's rights, with the suspension of the Shah's Family Protection Law. This law had restricted, although not abolished, polygamy, and had made it possible for a woman to apply for a divorce. What fueled the March mobilization, however, and made it a particularly strong expression of spontaneods anger, was Khomeini's pronouncement that women ought to wear the vme workin; outside the home. ~hcxt mmd onto the -. streets of Tehran in the heavy snow shouting "Freedom does not impose rules and regulations." They had no intention of handing over to the Shi'i clergy what they felt they had achieved with the Shah's overthrow.* After the March 1979 events numerous women's groups and organizations continued to emerge. At the same time, the ruling clergy have intensified their attacks against women's rights in their attempt to Islamicize Iranian society. How do we understand these complex contradic- tory trends-the magnitude of women's participation, and the simultaneous overwhelming use of the veil, the symbol most associated with centuries of women's oppression in the east? Furthermore, how do we explain the subsequent sharp polarization among these same women, between those who identified their "human emancipation and fulfillment" with the implementation of "true Islam," and those who from the very beginning found themselves in a 'This development was distinct from apparently similar experiencesin othercoun~i~ The Iranian woman, covered in a black chador that enfolds her completely from head UJ toe, marching upanddown the women'scontingent with a walkie.lalkie, andraisingher black gloved fist to shout militant anti.Shah slogans, probably evoked for some observers the aura surroundinv Algerian women as thev transwrted bombs under their veils from one quarter to sndihep-during the ~1geriG rrvofution. However, in post.
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This note was uploaded on 02/17/2011 for the course HIST 246 taught by Professor Holden during the Spring '11 term at Purdue University-West Lafayette.

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Tabari - ~p Women at a demonstration in Tehran after the revolution R andy Goodman Azar Tabari n e unique and striking feature of the Iranian

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