Asiatica Association

Encyclopedia of Women and Islamic Cultures

1 apr 2011, archived in resources

The Encyclopedia of Women and Islamic Cultures (EWIC) is an interdisciplinary, transhistorical project that compiles essays by scholars on all women in Muslim majority societies and all Muslim women in Muslim minority societies. The print version of EWIC, consisting of 6 volumes (1,246 articles, 2 million words), was written by 907 scholars from around the world and published between 2003-2007.

EWIC is now available online as a digital, fully searchable database of articles on every facet of life of women in societies with a Muslim population, anywhere in the world. In addition to the complete print edition, EWIC Online publishes two online supplements per year, totaling 200,000 words, and adding 50-60 original scholarly articles annually to the already extensive index of articles on women and Islamic cultures.

The encyclopedia surveys the broad spectrum of women’s lives in cultures where Islam has been a significant presence. It documents the lived realities and experiences of women and Islamic cultures, concerning issues as far-ranging as politics, economics, law, religions, health, and the sciences. In addition, EWIC provides articles on the arts, medicine, crafts, recreation, local governance, women’s movements, music, art, and literary production. EWIC Online further innovates with the publication of audio and video material for the first time.

EWIC ONLINE fills in gaps where scholarship was previously inaccessible or too underdeveloped for publication and includes new entries on ground-breaking and contemporary research topics. The collective product of EWIC will offer a view of the complexities, diversities, pluralities, specificities, contradictions, and historical transformations in the civilizational experiences of Islamic cultures as they pertain to women. Rather than allow all women in Islamic cultures to be seen as undifferentiated and homogenized, as they are so often portrayed in political commentary, media representations, and the popular imagination, EWIC situates Muslim women in their cultures and histories. In articulating the range of experiences by class, ethnicity, nation, region, and historical period, EWIC documents the complexities of Islamic cultures and the diversity of meanings and experiences of women in Islamic cultures.


For more info:

Dr. Suad Joseph

General Editor, Encyclopedia of Women and Islamic Cultures

Professor of Anthropology and Women and Gender Studies

University of California, Davis


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