Through the Eyes of Mourners: Feelings and Beliefs of Iranian Women in Practices of the Month of Muharram

Zahra Abedinezhad (The Ohio State University)

The Shia community reminds itself of the battle of Karbala through practices such as Ta’ziyeh. Ta’ziyeh (mourning) dramatically reenacts the battle to bring the event and its heroes to life. Women’s participation in this performance is focused on weeping; religious mourners believe that tears are life-giving and compensate for the life of Imam Hussein. However, not all mourners follow the same religious principles. This study examines the meaning of mourning for women with various religious ideologies participating in traditions of Muharram. Mourning brings life to the community of Shiite women by providing them opportunities for liberty, resistance, and co-existence.

Part of 05-14 Death, Legend, and Belief, Friday, October 14, 10:30 am–12:30 pm