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Volume 1 - Issue 2 (February 2021)

Global rise of Islamic feminism and its status


- Shafaque Hyder *

Abstract

The Islamic religious sciences with modern interpretative knowledge are majorly influenced by the matter of gender equality. Muslim women scholars from various countries are working towards the production of alternative religious knowledge that takes gender equality and justice into account and broadly termed as Islamic Feminism. This article provides a gist of feminist theories and their movements, contribution towards a paradigm shift of thoughts/believes and the role these activists in generating awareness among the masses especially women. It stresses over the implications by the expansion of boundaries over its content orientation where Islamophobia and globalization are causing a hindrance in the development of the Islamic feminism. There are many drawbacks and loopholes of these movements. This study examines the development of a new feminist discourse among Islamic women all over the world and the challenges it poses in the Muslim society. The development of feminist discourse is dependent on region wide political, social and religious conditions. The leaders deprive women of rights provided to them by Qurán and the Hadeeth. Based on the qualitative paradigm and semi-structured study, it is revealed that the Feminist Islamic “dialect” addresses various authoritarian structures- (1) State institutions, (2) Muslim patriarchal religious politicization that entrench patriarchal control. There is an alliance between State officials, patriarchal and religious establishment gatekeepers, such as Islamic Movement clerics, Sharia court judges. Despite much opposition, women voiced their opinion in demand of their legal Rights and against any form of oppression. To their success, many new changes, advancements and reforms came into existence.

Keywords: Islamic feminism, Gender inequality, women’s rights, Qur’an, Musawah, Arab Spring.

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