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Aala Abdelgadir

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Graduate Student Research Funding, Conflict and Polarization Initiative Fellow | 2018 - 2019 Academic Year

Islamic Conservatism and Women's Empowerment

How has the rise of Islamic conservatism affected female empowerment in sub-Saharan Africa? In Arab countries, strict interpretations of Islam place restrictive demands on women and favor men in education and employment, leading to women’s relative disempowerment (Blaydes and Linzer 2008). On the other hand, there is evidence that women’s educational attainment and reproductive health improve under the rule of Islamists (Meyersson 2014). This study investigates how the importation of conservative ideology in sub-Saharan Africa and its dissemination through mosque sermons shape women’s economic prospects.

Aala Abdelgadir, Department of Political Science

Aala Abdelgadir

Aala Abdelgadir is a PhD candidate in political science. She holds a BA in political science from Yale University. Prior to Stanford, she worked as a research associate for the Civil Society, Markets, and Democracy Program at the Council on Foreign Relations. Abdelgadir’s dissertation focuses on ideological transformation of Islam in sub-Saharan Africa and its impact on inter-religious conflict. In other work, she focuses on the effect of integration policies on Muslims in the West.

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