Two upcoming publications and six conferences for Pascale Fournier

Professor Fournier is publishing, this fall, an article in Droit et Société (copublication with Pascal McDougall) titled “Le droit comparé et la violence faite aux femmes : voyages au coeur de la narration identitaire” which discusses honor crimes and proposes a genealogy of the phenomenon that trumps Western perceptions of its exclusive belonging to foreign cultures. This contribution purports to refine our understanding of violence against women and the legal transplantations it leads to when addressed cross-culturally by looking at, among other notions, the defense of provocation which takes on a different meaning through the lens of comparative law.

Pascale Fournier also signs a chapter in the book Secularism on the Edge: Rethinking Church-State Relations in the United States, France and Israel, edited by Jacques Berlinerblau, Sarah Fainberg and Aurora Nou. In this major contribution to the growing field of secular studies, her chapter “Secular Portraits and Religious Shadows : An Empirical Study of Religious Women in France” looks at the complex ways through which religious women in France experience secularism, relying on fieldwork conducted among Jewish and Muslim women. In a society that defines itself through its laïcité model and the neutrality of its public spaces, an incursion in the lives of minority women reveals how the reality on the field, amidst constant interactions of the public and the private, of the religious and the secular, is often a whole other story.

In addition to these publications, Professor Fournier will also attend three conferences throughout the fall season. She will first visit Georgetown University for a live filmed exchange with prominent secularism theoretician Jacques Berlinerblau, “Quebec, Muslim and Jewish Women and the Crisis of Canadian Secularism“,  in which she will discuss her current research projects and the future prospects of secularism. Professor Berlinerblau has expressed many times, and recently again in an opinion piece, the need for secular studies to lend an ear to what  Professor Fournier’s ethnographic work reveals.  She will also take this opportunity to deliver lectures in various faculties. In October, Professor Fournier will take part in the International Women’s Forum’s first exchange, which will take place in Atlanta, Georgia. For the occasion, 37 women from 14 different countries will gather at the National Center for Civil & Human Rights, a renown cultural center dedicated to dynamic and interactive explorations of civic and human rights stories, to launch the initiative Human Rights / Human Responsibility: Toward a Better Future, a dialogue between members of the IWF about future perspectives in the evolution of Human Rights. She will then fly to London, in November, to attend “Transnational Muslim Marriages: Wellbeing, Law and Gender”,  an initiative of the “Academy of Finland” which will lead to the publication of a book in 2017 and which will take place at the City University of London in 2014, in London in 2016 and at the University of Helsinki in Finland, in 2017. Professor Fournier will give a conference on her field research among Jewish and Muslim Women in Britain.

Back in the country, she will be in Toronto in November to attend the 39th annual meeting of the Social Science History Association, an event much anticipated that will focus on the theme “Inequalities: Politics, Policy and the Past”. Professor Fournier will give a talk about her research in the United Kingdom among Jewish and Muslim women whose religious marriages receive different recognitions from the state, depending on which religion they adhere to. She will elaborate on the conclusions to be drawn, most importantly on the impact that marriage state recognition has on the lives and identities of minority women and what these normative intersections mean for legal pluralism among secular societies.

This conversation will continue throughout the beginning of 2015 when Professor Fournier will present, on January 8th in Montreal, ” Pluralité de régimes juridiques et reconnaissance étatique partielle: quels enjeux pour la démocratie?“,  as part of a series of conferences co-orchestrated by the UNESCO Chair and the UQÀM-MDC Chair (Mondialisation, Citoyenneté et Démocratie). This joint initiative purports to explore, from different perspectives and through various disciplines, the question of political cosmology by reflecting on the necessity of a political community in the context of democracy and on the links that tie current citizen awakenings, recognition of social pluralisms and the rise of an international solidarity.

Professor Fournier will also be back in Toronto on January 15th, this time for the York-Noor Lectures series which will explore the theme “Islam in the mirror of the West”. Her conference, titled “Islamic Family Law in the West: Voices from the field” will cover her ethnographic fieldwork in general and will discuss the complex ways through which Western societies compose with Muslim populations, more specifically with legal pluralism and women’s rights issues.