Dr Eva Nisa

Eva Nisa

Relegitimising Religious Authority:
Indonesian Women 'Ulamā' Amid COVID-19

Dr Eva Nisa is a senior lecturer in anthropology in the School of Culture, History and Language, College of Asia and the Pacific at the Australian National University, and an ARC DECRA fellow. She is a scholar of anthropology and Islamic studies, researching how global currents of Islam reshape the lives of Muslims in Southeast Asia. Her current research focuses on Islamic cultural economy in Indonesia and Malaysia. Her other research interests include Islam and gender relations, religion and media (social media), female Muslim judges and Islamic law, the global politics of moderate Islam, and Muslim refugees and migration.

Relegitimising Religious Authority: Indonesian Women 'Ulamā' Amid COVID-19

This presentation analyses how female religious authorities who colour the daily daʿwa (proselytisation) landscape in Indonesia deal with the uncertainties brought by the pandemic. The Daʿwa scene in Indonesia has long been the site of contestation among various competing ideological understandings. The pandemic and proliferation of digital religion has led women ʿulamāʾ to relegitimise their authority through an online presence so they can compete and counter the narratives of tech-savvy conservative Muslims.