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Engaging Religion to Promote Female Empowerment and Health: Case Studies in Hinduism and Islam

Women’s Policy Journal of Harvard 2010(8):23-44

23 Pages Posted: 19 Sep 2013  

Dhrubajyoti Bhattacharya

University of San Francisco

Date Written: September 19, 2013

Abstract

In South Asia, numerous health-related issues, such as unsafe abortions, sex-selective abortions, lack of access to contraceptives, and domestic violence, continue unabated. Rather than recycle decades-old arguments citing "human rights" violations, this article examines motifs of autonomy, equality, and empowerment within the Indian and Pakistani cultures, focusing on Hinduism and Islam, respectively, to promote female empowerment. In doing so, the article highlights opportunities for cultural engagement -- rather than examples of legal derogation -- to support communities in a diaspora where the separation of church and state is hardly rigid and socioreligious dialogue can be utilized to enhance gender parity.

Keywords: global health, ethics, global health law, women's rights, women's health, gender and health, religion

Suggested Citation

Bhattacharya, Dhrubajyoti, Engaging Religion to Promote Female Empowerment and Health: Case Studies in Hinduism and Islam (September 19, 2013). Women’s Policy Journal of Harvard 2010(8):23-44. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2328018

Dhrubajyoti Bhattacharya (Contact Author)

University of San Francisco

2130 Fulton Street
San Francisco, CA 94117
United States

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