Home Institution

University of San Francisco

Publication Date

Fall 2018

Program Name

Jordan: Geopolitics, International Relations, and the Future of the Middle East


This research aims to examine women’s divorce rights in Jordan examining the topic both through their legal rights as well as through the cultural challenges and stigma that divorced women face. The research is focused specifically on the rights of Muslim women, who have to file for divorce through the Shari’a court system, in Jordan that are Jordanian nationals. The literature used in the research provides background insight into Jordan’s tribal system, family law in Jordan, and psychological theories that relate to group therapy and self-efficacy in divorced women. The researcher hypothesizes that despite the many socio-economic and legal reasons that stand in a woman’s way of getting a divorce, the main reason is the cultural stigma that exists surrounding divorce, and the way that the culture is set up to blame a woman for her failed marriage. Through interviews with both women that had gone through the process of getting divorced in Jordan and Jordanians that work in organizations that provide legal aid and support to these women, it was discovered that going forward there needs to be a change in the mindset regarding divorced women. Across the board the findings were that the main reasons why women were so reluctant to exercise their right to get divorced was because of the cultural stigma. The proposed solution relates to peer to peer counseling and group therapy services, which will connect women to each other and offer a support network that needs to exist in order for women to feel like they are not alone in the painful process.


Family Law | Feminist, Gender, and Sexuality Studies | Gender and Sexuality | Law and Gender | Legal Studies | Near and Middle Eastern Studies | Near Eastern Languages and Societies | Religion Law | Social and Cultural Anthropology | Women's Studies


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