Joelle Entelis


Part I of this Note briefly discusses the development of International Human Rights Law as embodied in international covenants today. Part I also discusses Islamic law, the traditional role of women under Islamic law and culture, Algeria's Constitution and Family Code, and other dynamics specific to Algeria that have hindered women's obtainment of equal rights in the modern era. Part II presents the debate between conservative Islamists who argue that international principles of human rights law are incompatible with Islamic law and the scholars who assert that the two are compatible. Part III, by focusing on fundamental principles underlying the provisions in both the international human rights doctrine and Islamic law, argues that international human rights provisions granting women equal status with men comport with Islamic law principles as much as do legal documents that the Algerian Government has drafted. This Note concludes that the deprivation of women's equal rights based on the claim of conflict with Islamic law is unjustified and that the example of Algeria proves that Islamic countries can and should protect human rights without regard to gender.