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Access Type

WSU Access

Date of Award

January 2015

Degree Type

Thesis

Degree Name

M.A.

Department

Communication

First Advisor

Stephanie T. Tong

Abstract

This thesis examines how technology affects two major components of courtship among Muslim American women: (1) mate selection and (2) cross-gender interactions between Muslim men and women. Sixteen individuals who self-identify as Muslim American women who are active users of online matchmaking websites participated in interviews conducted through Skype about their online dating experience. Qualitative data analysis suggests that these women balance the perceived advantages of online dating (e.g., increased individual agency in initiating romantic relationships) with their desire to maintain traditional cultural and religious courtship practices. This study contributes towards a deeper understanding of CMC and online dating among Muslim American women, and gives insights into the nature of technological change and adaptation in society more generally.

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