Freedom from the Forbidden

All things gender and Islam. No bigotry is allowed in this feminist territory. #DeathToPatriarchy

Islamic feminism

Book Review: Olfa Youssef’s The Perplexity of a Muslim Woman: Over Inheritance, Marriage, and Homosexuality

The Perplexity of a Muslim Woman: Over Inheritance, Marriage, and Homosexuality Olfa Youssef Translated from the Arabic by Lamia Benyoussef Lexington Books, 2017. 156 pages. $80 A shorter version of this review is published in the American Journal of Islamic Social Sciences Olfa Youssef’s The Perplexity of a Muslim Woman: Over Inheritance, Marriage, and Homosexuality—translated by Lamia Benyoussef from the Arabic Ḥayratu Muslima—addresses some of the practical and conceptual inconsistences in […]

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A Response to Yasmin Mogahed’s Article Against Female-Led Prayer

Since the article by Yasmin Mogahed where she argues against female-led prayer (google it) has been making rounds again and it has some misleading and false statements, here’s a response to it, point by point. Collectively written by me, Zahra K., and someone else. Yasmin Mogahed’s points are in red, and our responses follow. Please note that this post is only a response to Mogahed’s claims and not entirely on […]

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the Qur’an does not prohibit women’s marriage to people of the book – and other facts about interfaith marriage in Islam

Pre-post: This is for those who believe that Muslim men are allowed to marry People of the Book while women are prohibited; because that means that the whole “shirk” of the People of the Book becomes relevant only when we’re talking about women but not when we’re talking about men (I address this below). If you believe it’s prohibited for BOTH genders, this isn’t for you.  According to most (Sunni) […]

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how not to respond when women point out an #allmale panel

 Muslim male “celebrity shaikhs” are exhausting to deal with. And a huge fail, too. They always complain that we don’t express our concerns “the right way” (about which, please see below), but then they block you and delete your comments and accuse you of “abusing” them or the comments section when you speak up. The latest case of blatant patriarchy (that I know of) in the Muslim American community is […]

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Menstruation, Ramadhan, and the Muslim Woman: beyond the whole “it’s a break from prayer/fasting!”

This post was inspired in part by a vibrant discussion on Facebook at this FITNA group. (FITNA = Feminist Islamic Troublemakers of North America). Both the  discussion and the group are public intentionally, and we invite readers and participants in the group from all over the world. If it were mere exemption, if it were a mercy, if it were a break, you would still have that option to OPT OUT of the exemption if […]

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Celebrating Islamic Feminism This Women’s History Month

Humanity! Salaam ‘alaik! It’s Women’s History Month. Of course, women deserve centuries of recognition and celebration, so this one month isn’t sufficient at all. But I’ll meh-ok this one month for now, given how rampant misogyny still is–and that  misogynist in le ‘Murrica can make it this far in elections and be taken so seriously. God protect us from the evils of patriarchy, aameen! So it’s women’s month, and and […]

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Book Review: “Men in Charge?: Rethinking Authority in Muslim Legal Tradition”

Needless to say, I recommend the book very, very highly. It’s one of the most important books I’ve ever read. Pre-Post: Please click here for more details on the book. Men in Charge?: Rethinking Authority in Muslim Legal Tradition Ziba Mir-Hosseini, Mulki Al-Sharmani, and Jana Rumminger (eds.) Oneworld Publications, 2014. ix, 286 pages. Published in the American Journal of Islamic Social Sciences (details below) At a time when men’s assumption […]

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Islamic feminism and the fear of inciting Islamophobia

This conversation needs to take place more widely, especially in feminist Muslim circles as well as in those fighting racism, Islamophobia, and other bigotry in the West: We need a way–a platform–to discuss problems internal to Muslims and Muslim/Islamic history that are rooted in patriarchy and that support and maintain patriarchy in way that would not be interpreted as perpetuating and/or endorsing Islamophobia. I, as a Muslim woman very critical […]

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Muslim women scholars of Islam, the question of qualifications, and romanticized images of the “Islamic tradition”

The following was inspired by the #NoAllMalePanels conversation that took place on Twitter. Speaking of which, if you’re a Muslim man and agree that there should be no more all-male panels, your support is useless without your signature on the pledge. Sign here. But understand that the #NoAllMalePanels wasn’t limited to acknowledging the authority of women scholars of Islam: it was about acknowledging and appreciating women’s knowledge in all fields. […]

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