Wednesday, April 16, 2008

The head of the Anglican Church, the Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams, has cited the work of Prof. Ayelet Shachar in a major speech about "Islam in English Law" delivered at the Royal Courts of Justice on February 7, 2008.

The Archbishop referred several times Prof. Shachar's book Multicultural Jurisdictions: Cultural Differences and Women’s Rights (2001), describing it as "highly original and significant" and using her concept of "transformative accommodation" as the basis for his proposals for dealing with Islamic law in the British context.

The Archbishop's speech has aroused considerable discussion and controversy in the United Kingdom as a result of its implication that elements of Islamic law should be accommodated in Great Britain. The following stories provide some context: