Reviews

In the wake of previous publications of hers (see notably her “Une note sur le rôle des femmes tatares converties au christianisme dans la réislamisation de la Moyenne-Volga, au milieu du xixe siècle,” in S. A. Dudoignon, D. Ish’aqov, R. Möhämmätshin, eds., L’islam de Russie: Conscience communautaire et autonomie politique chez les Tatars de la Volga et de l’Oural, depuis le xviiie siècle, Paris: Maisonneuve & Larose, 1997: 65-71), this study shows that women’s role in the nineteenth-century re-Islamicisation of the Kriashens (the descendants of the Muslim and animistic Tatars who had been baptised from the sixteenth to eighteenth centuries) was not limited to the domestic sphere (an assumption of a majority of historians and ethnographers of the Volga-Ural region), but had important repercussions on the future of their communities.  The author notably demonstrates that there was a positive vision of women in popular oral and written Tatar traditions; secondly that women embodied this image by actively proselytising for Islam in both their households and their villages; and, thirdly, that family, sacred and educational networks were essential to the spread of Islam.  These conclusions lead her to a tentative reinterpretation of gender roles in traditional pre-jadid Islam, and of the Kriashen apostasy movement as a whole.

The Redaction
CER: I-5.3.B-431