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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Versioning Womanhood and Muslimhood: 'Fashion' and the Life Course in Contemporary Bouaké, Côte d'Ivoire
Author:LeBlanc, Marie NathalieISNI
Periodical:Africa: Journal of the International African Institute
Geographic term:Ivory Coast - Côte d'Ivoire
female dress
Peoples of Africa (Ethnic Groups)
Women's Issues
Religion and Witchcraft
Cultural Roles
Sex Roles
External link:https://www.jstor.org/stable/1161069
Abstract:On the basis of field research carried out in 1992-1995 and 1998 this article discusses the way young Muslim women dress in Bouaké, Côte d'Ivoire, and what it tells us about the trajectory of their lives and view of the world. Arguing that fashion is emblematic of processes of identification, the article explains how young women come to be situated and position themselves in these processes. To do so, it examines the processes through a life course analysis that takes into account local versionings of tradition and aesthetics, Muslim cosmology and ideals of Western modernity. On the basis of three case histories, it shows that as young women gain social maturity and assume the socially defined status of adult they dress and act increasingly in a manner that emphasizes Muslim identity. However, these changes are not just a result of progression through life. In fact, processes of identification must also be understood in terms of historically situated moments of social change and the immediacy of situations of identification. In this case, the various ways in which women use dress reflect the stance they adopt towards competing versionings of Islam (Wahhabiyya, Malikite, and Arabized Islam). Bibliogr., notes, ref., sum. in English and French.