The scientific and academic research that has been done in relation to Marital Captivity is highlighted below. The list is categorized according to the different themes (individual, EU, and human rights) it is associated with in the existing academic literature. The pieces that delve into the definition and specifics of Marital Captivity have also been (shortly) reviewed by FFF. Since we initiated the term and lead the research on this topic, we believe our expert opinion can be of shared value to the academic world.
- Femmes For Freedom. (2018, June 20). FFF’s response to the letter from Minister Dekker and the Maastricht University research.
FFF provided a statement in which they detail the inaccuracies and unreliable data produced by Maastricht University. The research lacked many angles and case studies, and relied on previous research that had already been deemed as “dark figures”.
- Fournier, P. (2019). Tying the Knot – In Between Marital Captivity and Women Empowerment in Lebanon and Israel. In S. Rutten, B. Deogratias, & P. Kruiniger (Eds.), Marital captivity: divorce, religion and human rights (pp. 45-74). The Hague: Eleven International Publishing. Manjoo, R., & Gore, R. A. (2019). An Old Problem with a New Name – Marital Captivity as a Violation of the Human Rights of Women. In S. Rutten, B. Deogratias, & P. Kruiniger (Eds.), Marital captivity: divorce, religion and human rights (pp. 137-162). The Hague: Eleven International Publishing.
The authors provide a detailed analysis of how marriage and divorce intersects with religion to prove and highlight the barriers and obstacles encountered by many women who are held captive in marriages that they do not wish to continue.
- Zee, M. (2012, June 14). Femmes for Freedom: Fighting against Marital Captivity. Leiden Law Blog.
The term marital captivity was first formulated and published by the author when covering the long legislative fight by Femmes For Freedom to broaden the definition of forced marriage to incorporate marital captivity as a criminal offence.
The studies presented below represent a collection of research portraying the issue of marital captivity in the EU context; Germany, UK, Spain, Belgium, the Netherlands, and France. The discourses surrounding divorce, religion, and law vary across the EU. However, the legal and social challenges encountered by women in situations of marital captivity are alike in each context. The literature below provides short-term and long-term solutions for marital captivity according to each researcher.
- Enright, M. (2013). The beginning of the sharpness: Loyalty, citizenship and Muslim divorce practice. International Journal of Law in Context, 9(3), 295-317.
The author portrays the challenges of divorce and how it overlaps legal bodies. Obtaining a civil divorce in the country of residency does not imply the dissolution of a marriage in a country where the marriage was held. The author presents the difficulties of international private law with cases of limping marriages.
- Fournier P. (2014). Secular Portraits and Religious Shadows: An Empirical Study of Religious Women in France. In: Berlinerblau J., Fainberg S., Nou A. (eds) Secularism on the Edge. Palgrave Macmillan, New York.
- Fournier, P. (2012). Halacha, The ‘Jewish State’ and The Canadian Agunah: Comparative Law at the Intersection of Religious and Secular Orders, The Journal of Legal Pluralism and Unofficial Law, 44:65, 165-204.
- Jaraba, M. (2018). The Practice of Khulʿ in Germany: Pragmatism versus Conservativism, Islamic Law and Society, 26(1-2), 83-110.
- Jaraba, M. (2019). Private dispute mediation and arbitration in Sunni-Muslim communities in Germany: family conflicts and divorce. In S. Rutten, B. Deogratias, & P. Kruiniger (Eds.), Marital captivity: divorce, religion and human rights (pp. 17-44). The Hague: Eleven International Publishing.
The author raises important issues of governance and religious minorities in Germany. When it comes to divorce and marriage the author presents solutions through the cooperation of Sharia councils and local authorities in order to prevent possible human rights violations.
- Kruiniger, P. (2019). Untying the Religious Knot – Instruments to Prevent or Resolve Marital Captivity in the Netherlands. In S. Rutten, B. Deogratias, & P. Kruiniger (Eds.), Marital captivity: divorce, religion and human rights (pp. 355-385). The Hague: Eleven International Publishing.
- Kruiniger, P. (2018). NIET LANGER GEKETEND AAN HET HUWELIJK!: Juridische instrumenten die huwelijkse gevangenschap kunnen voorkomen of oplossen. . Universiteit Maastricht, 6-196.
- Lecoyer, K. (2019). Protecting Women against Marital Captivity – An Analysis of Insiders’ Perspectives on Muslim Divorce in Belgium. In S. Rutten, B. Deogratias, & P. Kruiniger (Eds.), Marital captivity: divorce, religion and human rights (pp. 93-134). The Hague: Eleven International Publishing.
- Leye, Els & Sabbe, Alexia. (2015). Forced marriage in Belgium. An analysis of the current situation.
By observing forced marriage in Belgium, the authors discover that divorce among individuals in Roma communities and Muslim communities are not regarded as a solution to their involuntary marriage due to the social consequences and stigmas in their communities. The social power in these cases sheds light to additional barrier encountered by women in situations of forced marriage and marital captivity.
- Protection of spouses in informal marriages by human rights, Utrecht Law Review 2010, 2, pp. 77-92. Also published in Turkey: Gayriresmi evliliklerde, eşlerin insan haklari yoluyla korunmasi, Küresel Bakış 2011,1, p. 193-214.
- Smits van Waesberghe, E., Sportel, I., Drost., L., van Eijk, E., Diepenbrock, E., Musa, S., Jonkman, H., van der Kooij, T., Rutten, S., Tan, S. (2014). Zo zijn we niet getrouwd: Een onderzoek naar omvang en aard van huwelijksdwang, achterlating en huwelijkse gevangenschap. Verwey-Jonker Institute, 1-151.
- Sonneveld, N., & Stiles, E. (2019). Khulʿ: Local Contours of a Global Phenomenon, Islamic Law and Society, 26(1-2), 1-11.
- Tazón Cubillas, A. (2008). Matrimonio islámico y derecho de familia español: algunos aspectos conflictivos. Aequalitas: Revista jurídica de igualdad de oportunidades entre mujeres y hombres, 22, 38-49.
- Van Eijk, E. (2017). Wel gescheiden, niet gescheiden?: Een empirisch onderzoek naar huwelijkse gevangenschap in Nederland. Universiteit Maastricht, 1-104.
Martial Captivity is a clear violation of numerous international treaties that protect the human rights of every individual around the world. It is a clear act of violence towards women. The studies presented below demonstrate how marital captivity relates to human rights, and propose solutions to tackle such phenomenon at its core and on an international level.
- Alagha, J. (2019). Marital Captivity & Violence – A Human Rights Perspective. In S. Rutten, B. Deogratias, & P. Kruiniger (Eds.), Marital captivity: divorce, religion and human rights (pp. 17-44). The Hague: Eleven International Publishing.
- Boerefijn, I. (2019). The Istabul Convention as a Framework to Combat Forced Marriage. In S. Rutten, B. Deogratias, & P. Kruiniger (Eds.), Marital captivity: divorce, religion and human rights (pp. 17-44). The Hague: Eleven International Publishing.
- Deogratias, B. (2019). Trapped in a religious marriage: A human rights perspective on the phenomenon of marital captivity. Intersentia.
- Le Figaro, 23 april 2021, La mutilation génitale n’est pas prêchée en Arabie saoudite, mais aux Pays-Bas, si!
- Le Monde, 10 april 2021, Shirin Musa: “Nous vous demandons, Monsieur le président, de faire tout ce que est en votre pouvoir pour combattre la captivé conjugale”
- POLIZIA E DEMOCRAZIA Numero 182 • Gennaio 2018 Ogni Donna deve essere libera di amare chi vuole
- The Economist 11 December 2017 How best to help women caught between different kinds of family law
- The Economist 9 December 2017 Marriages of inconvenience
- Yahoo Japan, 2 June 2017; “If there is freedom to marry, why not freedom to divorce?”
- Causeur, 3 August 2017 Pays-Bas: Shirin Musa, la femmes voilee islamophobe.
- Israel Times, 21 July 2017 In Rotterdam, posters of Jewish man and Muslim woman spark a scandal.
- Yahoo Japan, 2 June 2017; “If there is freedom to marry, why not freedom to divorce?”
- Belgium Television (RTBF) 30 December 2015 on marital captivity Pays-Bas: femmes prisonnières de leur mariage religieux?
- Jerusalem Post 21 February 2013 Yesh Atid MK: plight of agunot is solvalble
- Radio Netherlands Worldwide 18 August 2012 Holiday in-Somalia turns into nightmare
- Leiden Law Blog 15 June 2012 Femmes for Freedom: fighting against marital captivity
- Radio Netherlands Worldwide 24 May 2012 Imprisoned marriage? Contact Femmes for Freedom
You can find Femmes for Freedom in the Dutch media on this page.