Open Journal Systems
Women's Crimes and the Criminalization of Sex
The penal or criminal codes of the Middle East and the Islamic world essentially treat women as reproductive beings whose sexuality must be constrained by men, the family and the state. Those interested in the evolution of laws should take into account the incomplete Islamization of customary or tribal law (`urf, but as this is not monolithic, `a`raf is more accurate) followed by legal codification in most countries that introduced principles of premodern Western laws. These codifications transferred authority over women (and their bodies) from their extended families to their husbands, or governments serving as the guardians of public order.
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