STATUS AND RIGHTS OF WOMEN IN ISLAM


This Monograph deals comprehensively with the Status and Rights of Women in Islam in the light of Qur'anic injunctions and Traditions of the Prophet (SAWS). It also discusses the significant reforms which have been enacted lately in a number of Muslim countries regarding marriage and divorce in order to protect the status and rights of women in accordance with the letter and spirit of the Qur'anic injunctions.

The Monograph empasises the fact that Islam emancipated women from pre-Islamic slavery and tyranny and raised them to the status of a respectable member of the family and of the society as a whole and equal in almost every respect to men except biologically. Islamic society, as evolved during the life of the Prophet (SAWS) granted full freedom to women to express their views on any matter freely and openly. Women in Islam were given the right to own and dispose of their property long before any other religion or society had conceded these rights to them. They were granted rights on par with men to offer protection (sanctuary) to any person they chose and this would be honoured.

Before the advent of Islam marriages and divorces in pre-Islamic Arabia were arbitrary, chaotic and fully controlled by men. They could keep as many wives as they liked and could divorce them at will with no provision for their maintenance. Islam systematized, regulated and institutionalized the custom of marriage. Marriage in Islam, though contractual, is a sacred and honoured covenant which can be terminated only under most compelling circumstances and only after all efforts at reconciliation have failed.

The monograph concludes that right from inception Islam has consistently exhibited progressive outlook towards the status of women and granted them rights on par with men. However the natural biological inequality could not be eliminated and therefore men because of their superior physical strength and consequent greater economic power were declared the breadwinners and heads of the family, guardians and protectors of their women and family.

It is hoped that this monograph on the Status and Rights of Women in Islam will excite the interest of both the scholars and the authorities in the Muslim world.