Unilateral Repudiation or Divorce?
Ṭalāq Betwixt and Between Diverse (Extra-)Judicial Environments

by Federica Sona

This contribution focuses on the (in)formal implementation of a form of nuptial dissolution – which is broadly identified with the Arabic term ṭalāq – in Italy. The essay raises red flags to signal normally unperceived dynamics affecting the (non-)recognition of foreign sharīʿah-compliant matrimonial dissolution forms, as well as potential discriminatory practices enacted by state legal systems and diplomatic missions. 
Adopting an interdisciplinary approach, the paper sheds light on otherwise concealed multiple family arrangements implying concurrent diverse nuptial statuses for transnational Muslim partners, including 'limping marriages' and polygamous unions. By juxtaposing Islamic and Italian legal provisions, gendered readings offered to the judiciary by disputing (ex-)spouses and contrasting perceptions on revocability are revealed. Thorough analyses of original Arabic-language documentation and their carefully tuned translations bring to light problematic ṭalāq recognitions, which deserve to be properly scrutinized, including unnotified man’s unilateral repudiations that violate the public policy criterion and the spouse’s right of defense.

DOI 10.23815/2421-2156.ITALJ           ISSN 2421-2156

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