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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Gender Religious Experience: Women and Quranic Schools in Eastern Sudan
Author:Al-Hasan, Idris S.
Year:1995
Periodical:Eastern Africa Social Science Research Review
Volume:11
Issue:1
Period:January
Pages:1-20
Language:English
Geographic term:Sudan
Subjects:Beja
Islamic education
women
Religion and Witchcraft
Education and Oral Traditions
Women's Issues
Cultural Roles
Education and Training
Status of Women
Sex Roles
education
gender
Abstract:The Hadendowa are the most widespread and numerically dominant group within the Beja tribe, who inhabit the Red Sea area of eastern Sudan. Taking gender as a point of departure, the present paper examines the experience of Hadendowa women as Muslims within the context of a traditional religious institution of learning, the 'khalwa' (Koranic school). A brief description of Hadendowa culture and social organization, religious ideology and gender relations provides the background for an understanding of the context in which Koranic schools exist and operate, and how women try to manipulate this traditional educational institution to improve their situation. Three types of 'khalwa' are identified: Swakin, Hamoshkoraib/Jabait, and modernist. The first two are locally perceived, initiated and supported and as such have a localized impact. The job of 'fekaitoon' ('khalwa' female principal teacher) remains within one religious family. The modernist type employs Western-oriented staff, often from outside the area. It is linked to national or even international institutions and has the objective of transforming local society and bringing it into the modern world. The author describes the variety of experiences within the 'khalwa' and presents examples of leading women. The article is based on research in 18 'khalwas' in Sinkat. Bibliogr., notes, ref., sum.
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