Hostname: page-component-848d4c4894-x24gv Total loading time: 0 Render date: 2024-05-26T06:57:13.527Z Has data issue: false hasContentIssue false

Studying Oil, Islam, and Women as if Political Institutions Mattered

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  25 November 2009

Alice Kang
Affiliation:
University of Wisconsin, Madison

Extract

By asserting that oil, not Islam, hurts gender equality, Michael Ross (2008) has made an important contribution to the debate on whether Islam bodes ill for women (Fish 2002; Inglehart and Norris 2003; Spierings, Smits, and Verloo 2009). Ross suggests that oil production decreases the number of female workers in countries with occupational segregation. The more women are left out of the formal economy, the fewer opportunities and resources they have for becoming influential political constituencies. According to Ross, “[t]his leaves oil-producing states with atypically strong patriarchal cultures and political institutions” (p. 107). Employing the same set of countries and data used in Ross (2008), I show that the institution of gender quotas, which is omitted from his statistical analyses, offsets the effects of oil rents on women's political representation. Gender quotas increase women's representation in Muslim majority and non-Muslim majority countries and in countries that are oil rich and oil poor. That “petroleum perpetuates patriarchy” (p. 120) is a tendency, not destiny.

Type
Critical Perspectives on Gender and Politics
Copyright
Copyright © The Women and Politics Research Section of the American Political Science Association 2009

Access options

Get access to the full version of this content by using one of the access options below. (Log in options will check for institutional or personal access. Content may require purchase if you do not have access.)

References

REFERENCES

Bhavnani, Rikhil. 2009. “Do Electoral Quotas Work after They Are Withdrawn? Evidence from a Natural Experiment in India.” American Political Science Review 103 (1):2335.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Blofield, Merike. 2006. The Politics of Moral Sin: Abortion and Divorce in Spain, Chile and Argentina. New York: Routledge.Google Scholar
Brambor, Thomas, Clark, William Roberts, and Golder, Matt. 2006. “Understanding Interaction Models: Improving Empirical Analysis.” Political Analysis 14 (1): 6382.Google Scholar
Braumoeller, Bear. 2004. “Interaction Term Checklist for Authors With Annotated Stata Batch File for Graphing Interaction Effects.” http://polisci.osu.edu/faculty/braumoeller/custom/checklist.html (May 30, 2009).Google Scholar
Charrad, Mounira. 2001. States and Women's Rights: The Making of Postcolonial Tunisia, Algeria, and Morocco. Berkeley and Los Angeles: University of California Press.Google Scholar
Dahlerup, Drude, ed. 2006. Women, Quotas, and Politics. New York: Routledge.Google Scholar
Dahlerup, Drude, and Freidenvall, Lenita. 2005. “Quotas as a ‘Fast Track’ to Equal Representation for Women: Why Scandinavia is No Longer the Model.” International Feminist Journal of Politics 7 (1): 2648.Google Scholar
Fish, Steven. 2002. “Islam and Authoritarianism.” World Politics 55 (1): 437.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Helmke, Gretchen, and Levitsky, Steven. 2004. “Informal Institutions and Comparative Politics: A Research Agenda.” Perspectives on Politics 2 (4): 725–40.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Htun, Mala. 2003. Sex and the State: Abortion, Divorce, and the Family Under Latin American Dictatorships and Democracies. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
Htun, Mala, and Jones, Mark. 2002. “Engendering the Right to Participate in Decision-Making: Electoral Quotas and Women's Leadership in Latin America.” In Gender and the Politics of Rights and Democracy in Latin America, ed. Nikki, Craske, and Maxine, Molyneux.New York: Palgrave.Google Scholar
Inglehart, Ronald, and Norris, Pippa. 2003. Rising Tide: Gender Equality and Cultural Change Around the World. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
International IDEA. 2009. “Global Database of Quotas for Women.” http://www.quotaproject.org/index.cfm (April 29, 2009).Google Scholar
Jones, Mark. 1998. “Gender Quotas, Electoral Laws, and the Election of Women: Lessons from the Argentine Provinces.” Comparative Political Studies 31 (1): 321.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Krook, Mona Lena. 2009. Quotas for Women in Politics: Gender and Candidate Selection Reform Worldwide. Oxford: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
Mehlum, Halvor, Moene, Karl, and Torvik, Ragnar. 2006. “Institutions and the Resource Curse.” Economic Journal 116 (508): 120.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Paxton, Pamela, Hughes, Melanie, and Painter, Matthew. N.d. “Growth in Women's Political Representation: A Longitudinal Exploration of Democracy, Electoral System, and Gender Quotas.” European Journal of Political Research. Forthcoming.Google Scholar
Robinson, James, Torvik, Ragnar, and Verdier, Thierry. 2006. “Political Foundations of the Resource Curse.” Journal of Development Economics 79 (2): 447–68.Google Scholar
Ross, Michael. 2008. “Oil, Islam, and Women.” American Political Science Review 102 (1): 107–23.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Spierings, Niels, Smits, Jeroen, and Verloo, Mieke. 2009. “On the Compatibility of Islam and Gender Equality: Effects of Modernization, State Islamization, and Democracy on Women's Labor Market Participation in 45 Muslim Countries.” Social Indicators Research 90 (3): 503–22.Google Scholar
Tripp, Aili Mari, and Kang, Alice. 2008. “The Global Impact of Quotas: On the Fast Track to Increased Female Legislative Representation.” Comparative Political Studies 41 (3): 338–61.Google Scholar