"Believing Women" in Islam

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"Believing Women" in Islam: Unreading Patriarchal Interpretations of the Qur'an is a 2002 book by Asma Barlas, published by the University of Texas Press. "Believing Women" in Islam_sentence_0

According to Barlas, the Qur'an does not support patriarchy and modern day Muslims were not properly interpreting the text. "Believing Women" in Islam_sentence_1

She argues that the Qur'an supports equal spousal and marital rights and does not differentiate among sex and gender. "Believing Women" in Islam_sentence_2

Barlas attributes incorrect interpretations of the Qur'an to the hadith, shariah, and sunnah. "Believing Women" in Islam_sentence_3

Barlas stated that men were mostly the ones who had developed shariah. "Believing Women" in Islam_sentence_4

Background "Believing Women" in Islam_section_0

As of 2002, Barlas was the head of the Ithaca College Department of Politics, and the interim director of the college's Center for the Study of Culture, Race, and Ethnicity. "Believing Women" in Islam_sentence_5

She is a Muslim and believes the Qur'an is of divine origin. "Believing Women" in Islam_sentence_6

Content "Believing Women" in Islam_section_1

Kristin Zahra Sands of the New York University Department of Middle Eastern Studies described the book as a Quranic exigesis rather than being an eternal study of exigesis. "Believing Women" in Islam_sentence_7

Barlas criticizes the traditional use of the hadith (sayings of Muhammed, not in the Quran) and tafsir (interpretation of the Quran), texts she sees as important to the misogynistic customs and beliefs in contemporary Islam, in Part I; these texts are often used together with the Qur'an in Islam. "Believing Women" in Islam_sentence_8

She advocates using itjihad (informed independent thought). "Believing Women" in Islam_sentence_9

The author has criticized some English translations of the Qur'an, and she argued that the document may be explored in any language. "Believing Women" in Islam_sentence_10

The main references used for the portions regarding the traditions of the Quran and tafsir are secondary sources and English translations. "Believing Women" in Islam_sentence_11

Sands described "Believing Women" as "Building particularly on the work of Fazlur Rahman and Farid Esack". "Believing Women" in Islam_sentence_12

Reception "Believing Women" in Islam_section_2

Sands argued that the book is "an interesting contribution to contemporary Muslim thought that will be useful in teaching a broad range of undergraduate and graduate courses." "Believing Women" in Islam_sentence_13

Sands stated that due to the book's use of Islamic and feminist terminology, it would be best used "selectively" in introductory classes. "Believing Women" in Islam_sentence_14

Sands argued that the book should have been "engaging more fully with the Arabic interpretative tradition" and that the book should not criticize a translation if it accurately reflects the original Arabic. "Believing Women" in Islam_sentence_15

Jane I. Smith of the Hartford Seminary stated that the book was "a well-constructed and thoughtfully written work, the arguments clearly developed and the prose a pleasure to read." "Believing Women" in Islam_sentence_16

Carolyn M. Craft of Longwood University wrote that the book is important for larger public libraries and academic libraries, and that it complements Qur'an and Woman: Rereading the Sacred Text from a Woman's Perspective by Amina Wadud. "Believing Women" in Islam_sentence_17


Credits to the contents of this page go to the authors of the corresponding Wikipedia page: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/"Believing Women" in Islam.