The burqa existed long before the Taliban, worn by Pashtun women to mark “the symbolic separation of men’s and women’s domains.” Although it could be argued that this reinforces patriarchal ideas of women belonging at home, we must remember that many saw the burqa as a “liberating invention”.
Asma Lamrabet offers a motivational reading of religious history where God repeatedly upholds the equality of women who are made of the same stuff as men. That’s a great place to start a conversation on how power is balanced between men and women within Islam.
The way the scenes were written especially with the characters who defended the rapist and the characters who stood up for Janna was extremely eye-opening. As Muslims, this book serves as a daily reminder not to put scholars and hafidhs on a pedestal. Do the research and listen to the victims when they try to speak up.
In ‘It’s Not About the Burqa’, Muslim Women, as a minority group in the West, tell their various points of view in their various essays, while focusing on one main goal: How Muslim women can overcome their struggles for identity amidst the multiple layers of oppression and injustice confronting them today.
As Ramadhan approaches, TMWT presents a list of carefully curated soul-lifting and empowering books to help every Muslim woman through the month. This list contains a translation of the Qur’an, the biography of the Prophet (PBUH), non-fiction books, fiction and memoir. These books will help you fall in love with your faith and reconnect with your Lord as you’ve never done before. You’re sure going to love them!
“In Her Words” is a big conversation starter. African women have come a long way but there is so much further to go. Books like this are vital for Africans, non-Africans and those seeking to understand feminism in Africa. It will also add to an already rigorous body of writing about this topic. While these essays promote a courageous and bird’s eye view of African women on the African continent, most of the writers agree that collective acceptance and solidarity is best achieved by promoting diversity even while fighting for the same cause.
The utopia unfolds to reveal an entirely flipped gender duality, with women at the frontiers of productivity, science, and innovation, and men tucked away in the oppressive comfort of their homes with little agency. Destruction of the binary rather than this reversal can seem more mature on the surface, but what is mature is rational, closer to the cognitively acceptable. It is in the unapologetic and blatant reversal of the gender hierarchy, then, instead of a meek and sober dissipation into equality, that we are estranged from the real-time and space of the narrative in a classic science fiction motif.
Daisy is a representation of the marginalisation of women and their existence as possession in the 1920s; her trophy wife status, beauty and lack of intelligence highlight a lineage of societal gender expectations on a woman. All of this as we are well aware of is an abstract image that still lives on today, built by males to manipulate and design the idea of the perfect woman. A mute, submissive and pretty woman.
Nafisi fails to separate Islam from Muslims, the actions of the men seem to represent Islam in her writing. She under-handedly supports the Islamophobic views of Islam’s outdatedness, barbarity, and anti-feminism. Her Western education and nationalist Iranian loyalties, highlight her lack of knowledge on the rights of women in Islam, as well as her general ignorance of the globality of Islam.
The TMWT team did a blog tour to handpick 16 books in commemoration of 16 days of activism. Enjoy!