Islam belongs in people’s lives, not in politics, says Karima Bennoune

Bennoune lays out a critique of Muslim fundamentalism, not from a crude “war on terror” viewpoint, but from a human rights perspective…A dilemma for women is whether to challenge the fundamentalists on religious terms. Opinion is divided. Afkhami (says) “…If you’re a woman, the guy who is the general in the religious army is not even going to pay the slightest attention to what your view of the text is.”

Iran Before Islam: Challenging Stereotypes Through Art

Americans are bombarded with media coverage of the three-decade-old Islamic Republic and its nuclear aspirations. But there’s more to Iran than Ahmdainejad, as can be seen in the Smithsonian’s Freer and Sackler Galleries’ new project, Feast Your Eyes: A Taste of Luxury in Ancient Iran. The Atlantic invited a panel of Iranian-American leaders to discuss the exhibit. Taking part in the dialogue are Azar Nafisi, the much-acclaimed Iranian-American author of long-standing New York Times bestseller Reading Lolita in Tehran; Massumeh Farhad, chief curator and curator of Islamic Art Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery; and Mahnaz Afkhami.

Women Could Promote Rights Through Islam

Despite the perception that strict Islamic law and feminism are incompatible, women’s rights advocates argued (at the U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Submcommittee on International Operations and Organizations, Human Rights, Democracy, and Global Women’s Issues’s hearing) that Muslim values could actually help women of the Arab Spring promote greater equality. Mahnaz Afkhami cautioned that while some Islamic countries have provided a more positive outlook, other examples, like Iran, give women reasons to worry.

How are women working to eliminate violence against women in Muslim-majority societies?

AWID Resource Net / By Rochelle Jones
AWID highlights the efforts of Muslim women to eliminate violence against women, as discussed in the recently released report from the International Symposium entitled “Leading to Change: Eliminating Violence Against Women in Muslim Societies.” The Symposium was convened by the Women’s Learning Partnership for Rights, Development and Peace (WLP) in March 2005.

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