1st Edition

Muslim Women’s Pilgrimage to Mecca and Beyond Reconfiguring Gender, Religion, and Mobility

    222 Pages
    by Routledge

    222 Pages
    by Routledge

    This book investigates female Muslims pilgrimage practices and how these relate to women’s mobility, social relations, identities, and the power structures that shape women’s lives. Bringing together scholars from different disciplines and regional expertise, it offers in-depth investigation of the gendered dimensions of Muslim pilgrimage and the life-worlds of female pilgrims. With a variety of case studies, the contributors explore the experiences of female pilgrims to Mecca and other pilgrimage sites, and how these are embedded in historical and current contexts of globalisation and transnational mobility. This volume will be relevant to a broad audience of researchers across pilgrimage, gender, religious, and Islamic studies.

    Introduction: Muslim pilgrimage through the lens of women’s new mobilities

    Marjo Buitelaar, Manja Stephan-Emmrich, and Viola Thimm

    1 Under male supervision? Nationality, age and Islamic belief as basis for Muslim women’s pilgrimage

    Viola Thimm

    2 Young Moroccan-Dutch women on hajj: Claiming female space

    Khadija Kadrouch-Outmany & Marjo Buitelaar

    3 Power in Moroccan women’s narratives of the hajj

    Kholoud Al-Ajarma

    4 Shi’i Muslim women’s pilgrimage rituals to Lady Fatemeh-Masoumeh’s

    shrine in Qom

    Ladan Rahbari

    5 Israeli Dead Sea cosmetics and charity for Palestinian children: Indonesian women’s shopping activities while on pilgrimage to Jerusalem

    Mirjam Lücking

    6 ‘Clothing cannot improve moral behaviour’: Pilgrimage, fashion, and entrepreneurship in a West African market

    Erin Kenny

    7 Considering the silences: Understanding historical narratives of women’s Indian Ocean hajj mobility

    Jacqueline H. Fewkes

    8 Bosnian women on hajj

    Dženita Karić

    9 In the ‘Land of Wonders’: Bint Al-Shāṭi’’s pilgrimage: The hajj and the construction of reformist religiosity

    Richard van Leeuwen

    10 Stepping in the footsteps of Hajar to bring home the hajj: Dialogical positioning in Asra Nomani’s memoir Standing Alone

    Marjo Buitelaar


    Marjo Buitelaar is an anthropologist and Professor of Contemporary Islam at the University of Groningen, The Netherlands. She is programme-leader of the research project 'Modern Articulations of Pilgrimage to Mecca', funded by the Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research (NWO).

    Manja Stephan-Emmrich is Professor of Transregional Central Asian Studies, with a special focus on Islam and migration, at the Institute for Asian and African Studies at Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, Germany, and a socio-cultural anthropologist. She is a Principal Investigator at the Berlin Graduate School Muslim Cultures and Societies (BGSMCS) and co-leader of the research project 'Women’s Pathways to Professionalization in Muslim Asia. Reconfiguring religious knowledge, gender, and connectivity', which is part of the Shaping Asia network initiative (2020–2023, funded by the German Research Foundation, DFG).

    Viola Thimm is Professorial Candidate (Habilitandin) at the Institute of Anthropology, University of Heidelberg, Germany. She has been Principal Investigator of the project 'From Malaysia to Dubai: Muslim pilgrimage and gender in the context of consuming practices', since October 2013 (funded by the Olympia Morata Programme in support of young female professors, DFG, and the 'Nachwuchsinitiative Universität Hamburg' – Initiative for young scholars).