Muslim marriage and divorce: recounting married women’s quest for individual sovereignty in literary and legal arenas of Bangladesh
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Marriage has been considered as one of the most ancient and important social institutions in human history. The benefits that marriage provides are undeniable, yet in most of the cases, it imposes restrictions and bindings on Muslim married women, particularly in the context of Bangladesh. Although, marriage promises happiness and fulfillment, yet it performs as a site for female subordination as it binds women to household labour, and limits their lives in the roles of wife and mother. My thesis will travel back and forth between the chronicles of fiction and reality by contemplating how these two arenas portray women’s condition in marriage, what are the similarities and disparities, and to what extent Muslim married women can establish their position as individuals and become the overseer of their lives. This thesis therefore will look into five texts by Bengali women writers and will try to explore the conditions of women in Muslim marriage and how do they achieve empowerment regarding their individual happiness, autonomy, as well as feminine sexuality. The legal part of this thesis further will cover the legal differences that Bangladesh has in relation with International laws in the issue of women’s question and their rights. Starting with the legal aid organizations and NGOs, and how do they play a key role in combating women discrimination in Bangladesh, will also be analyzed in this dissertation through primary and secondary datas from real life.