Women Between the Tyranny of the Western System and the Mercy of the Islamic Law

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Author:Dr. Muhammad Said Ramadan al-Buti
Publisher:Dar al-Fikr
Year of Publication:2009 CE

Despite increasing awareness of Islam throughout the Western world, there continues to be a prevailing belief among Westerners that Muslim women enjoy few, if any, genuine rights, and that whatever rights they do enjoy are the result of Western influence on the Islamic World. In: Women Between the Tyranny of the Western System and the Mercy of the Islamic Law, Dr. al-Buti details women's rights and freedoms as provided for by Islam in the professional, social, political, religious, academic and cultural spheres. In addition, he deals in careful detail with specific questions revolving around issues such as the Qur'anic teaching on males' and females' inheritance, polygamy, husbands' treatment of their wives, divorce and the "veil". In so doing, the author presents us with a well-documented, forthright study capable of providing people in Western societies with a more accurate understanding of Islamic teachings as they pertain to women and their roles in society.

Contents 5

Translator's Preface 11

About the Author 15

Introduction 17

Chapter One: The Source of Women's Lefts and Duties in Islamic Law and in Western Societies 25

Introduction 25

The source of women's lefts and duties in Islamic law 27

The source of women's lefts and duties in the reality of Western societies 37

Chapter Two: Women's Position in Islam 52

Introduction 52

Women and the left to life 56

Women and the left to legal competence 68

Women and their lefts to freedom: 84

* The freedom to work 89

* Political freedom 98

Women and social lefts 118

* Attending prayer with men in the mosque 118

* Taking part in academic and cultural pursuits 119

* Participating in social gatherings, celebrations and banquets 122

* Pursuing professions and crafts and the exercise of other skills 128

Chapter Three: Speaking of "difference" and "equality" 135

What is equality? 135

* The meaning of the term "guardianship" (qiw?mah) 138

* Inheritance 150

The primary misconception involved in people's understanding of this verse 152

Does the ruling change if a woman has become financially independent through employment or otherwise? 157

"Rebelliousness" 163

* The situation and the complication 163

* What would happen if the sought-after equality were achieved? 164

* Should objection be made to the legitimacy of striking one's wife? 166

Polygamy 172

* Human interests and the law of graded priorities 172

* The opposing viewpoint 177

* When are the conditions for the legitimacy of polygamy fulfilled? 188

* Why is polyandry not permitted in Islam? 190

Divorce 194

* The divorce-dowry dialectic 194

* The system of divorce in Islam 197

* What is the alternative? 200

* The philosophy behind the dowry and its role in preserving marriage 205

* The misuse of divorce 210

Legal testimony 213

The "veil" (?ij?b) 224

* The rationale behind the hij?b 225

* Misunderstandings of the rationale behind the hij?b 234

* Is the hij?b an impediment to women's progress? 237

* Men's selfishness and its role in their resistance to women's modesty 243

Texts from misunderstood prophetic traditions 253

Chapter Four: Holdovers from pre-Islamic Practices


Introduction 274

The view of women held by some 277

Inheritance and the dowry 284

Polygamy in chaos 292

Partiality in the giving of gifts 300

The husband's demanding a share of his wife's money 306

Conclusion 313

*A brief reflection on the "creational" and "legislative" orders 313


Dr. Muhammad Said Ramadan al-Buti
  • English
Dar al-Fikr
Year of Publication:
2009 CE

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