In August 2017, Jordan banned a law that allowed rapists to escape punishment by marrying their victims. This was hot on the heels of Tunisia that repealed this law at the end of July, while Morocco overhauled its law in 2014 and Egypt repealed its law in 1999.
Citizenship is a complex issue to define, with both legal definitions and political definitions sometimes at odds with each other. Beginning with the groundbreaking work of T. H. Marshall in the immediate post-war period, scholars and commentators have wrestled with the nature of citizenship. In Zimbabwe, the terms has minimal definition in the amended Constitution of 2013, but its meaning in political life has yet to be clearly defined, and it may be argued that it there are contested views of who is a “citizen” in Zimbabwe, with attempts even to exclude many people residing in Zimbabwe.
This paper, which is part of a broader programme examining citizenship and women in Zimbabwe, examines briefly the state of current arguments about the nature and application of citizenship, and extends this into a short consideration about what is meant by “active citizenship”. This is then extended further into a consideration in of “active citizenship” and “social capital” amongst women in Zimbabwe.