“Theological Reflections on the Hong Kong Umbrella Movement” (Tse & Tan, eds.)

In May, Palgrave Macmillan will release “Theological Reflections on the Hong Kong Umbrella Movement,” edited by Justin K. H. Tse (University of Washington), and Jonathan Y. Tan (Case Western Reserve University).  The publisher’s description follows:

This book gathers the voices of four local Hong Kong theologians to reflect on the 2014 democracy protests in the city from the perspectives of Catholic social teaching, Unknownfeminist and queer intersectionality, Protestant liberation, and textual exegesis. The volume also includes an extended primer on Hong Kong politics to aid readers as they reflect on the theology underlying the democracy protests.
September 28, 2014 is known as the day that political consciousness in Hong Kong began to shift. As police fired eighty-seven volleys of tear gas at protesters demanding “genuine universal suffrage” in Hong Kong, the movement (termed the “Umbrella Movement”) ignited a polarizing set of debates over civil disobedience, government collusion with private interests, and democracy. The Umbrella Movement was also a theological watershed moment, a time for religious reflection. This book analyzes the role that religion played in shaping the course of this historic movement.

Nawi on Family Mediation in Malaysian Muslim Society

Nor Fadzlina Nawi (La Trobe University) has posted Family Mediation in Malaysian Muslim Society: Some Lessons for the Civil Family Law in Malaysia. The abstract follows.

Malaysia’s justice system is exceptional in that it reflects the country’s multi-racial and multi-religious culture. Malaysia has a two-tier legal system, including family law. Family law matters relating to Muslims are administered separately from those of non-Muslims. Muslims are dealt with under the jurisdiction of the Syariah courts, while non-Muslims are dealt with under the jurisdiction of the civil courts. It is significant to note that, since 2002 there has been a mandatory family mediation service also known as Sulh for Muslims but a similar service is yet to be established under the civil legal system for the non-Muslims in Malaysia. The Sulh process is reported to be successful in dealing with the backlog of cases in the Syariah Courts. It is claimed that the benefits of making mediation mandatory generally prevail over the potential harms for families, even when violence is an issue, provided that its design and realizations are carefully thought of. Hence, it could be argued that it is only fair and equitable that an equivalent form of process be made available to non-Muslims in the civil family law system.

Thus, the current paper is not concerned with whether or not mediation should be made mandatory in family disputes, but rather the best way in approaching its application and implementation in the civil legal system Malaysia. Considering that the Islamic family law system has already been progressively establishing a form of mandatory mediation for Muslims in Malaysia, the paper briefly describes and reflects on the development and implementation of the Sulh program and highlights some of the lessons for the civil legal system towards establishing a mandatory family mediation program for non-Muslims in Malaysia.

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