In Righteous Transgressions Lihi Ben Shitrit rethinks pious women’s agency by examining women’s participation in nationalist religious movements. Using case studies from the Israeli and the Palestinian religious rights (the Jewish settler movement and the ultra-Orthodox Shas party; the Islamic Movement within Israel and Hamas), the text explores how women activists in these movements use “frames of exception” that allow them to temporarily step out of their constricted gender roles and perform their activism, turning social and religious transgressions into what they perceive to be righteous acts.

Ben Shitrit labels the movements “expressions of contemporary socially conservative religious movements that have become increasingly visible and influential since the 1970s and that offer a particular fusion of religion and politics” (78). While each movement engages with proselytizing and nationalist commitments to different degrees, since the 1980s they can be...

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