JISPIL Vol 12 Issue 2 2016 - Article 3

A Critical Legal Analysis of the Impact of Male Guardianship System on Women’s Rights in Saudi Arabia.
Bandar Alshahrani
This Article analyses the concept of guardianship system under Islamic Law and culture. Women’s rights in Saudi Arabia continue to attract International debates. The study in the article deepens and sharpens the understanding of Islamic representations of women and their fundamental rights at the level of conceptual and normative enquiry, questioning the extent of rights protection for women in Saudi Arabia, as established in Shari’ah, the normative principles that inform it, and the impact of relevant Saudi laws on the rights owed to, and restrictions placed on women in respect of various sphere of life. The tension between fundamental rights under Human Rights Law and elements inherent in Islamic law that remains underexplored, coupled with the relationship between public/private rights in Shari’ah; the justification for differentiated gender rights, the relationship between rights and responsibilities in Islam owed by male guardians vis-a-vis special protection of women.

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