Women and Islam: Myths, Apologies, and the Limits of Feminist Critique

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9780739179062: Women and Islam: Myths, Apologies, and the Limits of Feminist Critique
Review:

Women and Islam: Myths, Apologies, and the Limits of Feminist Critique is both an important book and a wonderful and exciting text. It should be required reading for all courses in Middle East Studies that seek to impart a serious understanding of the real lives of Muslim women. The study of Muslim women has become a battleground where the academy seems more concerned with debating whether Islam is good or bad than with probing how this religious system actually works. By bringing together texts written by Europeans, as well as by Muslim men and women in pre-modern Muslim Iberia, Ibtissam Bouachrine shows that women's lives do not comprise a unified story captured either by those who see only unremitting suffering and abuse or by those who find signs everywhere of their resistance. Women and Islam provides a totally new understanding of the representations of women drawn by some of the famous works in European languages, which have often been interpreted as possessing assertions for more than their language actually warrants. By placing Muslim and European texts in a kind of literary dialogue-and only someone possessed of a rich set of linguistic skills and literary sensitivity can discharge this kind of scholarly task-Bouachrine is able to uncover the diversity of points of view about women and perhaps, more importantly convey their meaning. -- Donna Divine, Smith College This is literary criticism, intellectual history, and feminist theory at their best. In uncompromising fashion, Ibtissam Bouachrine's Women and Islam challenges received myths or partial pictures of both past and present Islam. Bouachrine courageously engages previous scholarship that had presented al-Andalus as a model of tolerance, early Islam as an ally of women's challenges to Arabian patriarchy, or the current Arab revolutions as potentially liberating for women, and submits these claims to a nuanced, impeccable feminist critique. This is a first-rate scholarly work with which specialists in feminist theory, Cultural Studies, both medieval and modern Arab literature, as well as history of religions, will grapple for years to come. -- Idelber Avelar, Tulane University Women in Islam: Myths, Apologies, and the Limits of Feminist Critique is a refreshing, well-written, and heartfelt critique of a series of modern myths, apologies, and celebratory discourses that have been constructed about the role and status of women in Islamic societies-medieval and modern. Beginning with a close reading of a broad range of pre-modern sources, Ibtissam Bouachrine demonstrates how modern myths and falsehoods about the Andalusian 'Golden Age' as well as the patronizingly protectionist Saidian discourse about Muslim culture have been used to silence criticism and stave off reform. Bouachrine also argues that the apologetic goal of some Muslim feminists to absolve 'true' Islam of any blame for the misogynistic practices of Muslim men inevitably ends up as a 'desperate attempt at defending a text against its own message.' She presses on to debunk the errant nonsense one finds in the works of some western feminists about the liberating nature of 'choosing' the veil, and concludes with a disheartening assessment of the consequences of the recent uprisings in North Africa and Egypt. Women in Islam is a welcome and outstanding contribution to the field. -- James E. Lindsay, Colorado State University

Review:

Women and Islam is both an important book and a wonderful and exciting text. It should be required reading for all courses in Middle East Studies that seek to impart a serious understanding of the real lives of Muslim women. The study of Muslim women has become a battleground where the academy seems more concerned with debating whether Islam is good or bad than with probing how this religious system actually works. By bringing together texts written by Europeans, as well as by Muslim men and women in pre-modern Muslim Iberia, Ibtissam Bouachrine shows that women's lives do not comprise a unified story captured either by those who see only unremitting suffering and abuse or by those who find signs everywhere of their resistance. Through her creation of this literary dialogue-and only someone possessed of a rich set of linguistic skills and literary sensitivity can discharge this kind of scholarly task-Bouachrine is able to uncover the diversity of points of view about women and perhaps, more importantly, convey their meaning. -- Donna Divine, Smith College This is literary criticism, intellectual history, and feminist theory at their best. In uncompromising fashion, Ibtissam Bouachrine's Women and Islam challenges received myths or partial pictures of both past and present Islam. Bouachrine courageously engages previous scholarship that had presented al-Andalus as a model of tolerance, early Islam as an ally of women's challenges to Arabian patriarchy, or the current Arab revolutions as potentially liberating for women, and submits these claims to a nuanced, impeccable feminist critique. This is a first-rate scholarly work with which specialists in feminist theory, Cultural Studies, both medieval and modern Arab literature, as well as history of religions, will grapple for years to come. -- Idelber Avelar, Tulane University Women and Islam is a refreshing, well-written, and heartfelt critique of a series of modern myths, apologies, and celebratory discourses that have been constructed about the role and status of women in Islamic societies-medieval and modern. Beginning with a close reading of a wide range of pre-modern sources, Ibtissam Bouachrine skillfully demonstrates how modern myths and falsehoods about the Andalusian 'Golden Age' as well as the patronizingly protectionist Saidian discourse about Muslim culture have been used to silence criticism and stave off reform. Women and Islam: Myths, Apologies, and the Limits of Feminist Critique is a welcome and outstanding contribution to the field. -- James E. Lindsay, Colorado State University

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Descripción Lexington Books, 2014. Estado de conservación: New. Brand New, Unread Copy in Perfect Condition. A+ Customer Service! Summary: Ibtissam Bouachrine's Women and Islam: Myths, Apologies, and the Limits of Feminist Critique calls for a shift away from the unproductive paradigm of "us" vs. the West that has informed discourse on Muslim women and feminism in the post-9/11 era. Bouachrine challenges and calls for further challenge to the long-celebrated myths and ideologies that have circulated in academic and non-academic circles about Muslim women and the role of feminism, both within and outside the Muslim world. Nº de ref. de la librería ABE_book_new_0739179063

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Descripción Lexington Books, United States, 2014. Hardback. Estado de conservación: New. 231 x 155 mm. Language: English . Brand New Book. Ibtissam Bouachrine s Women and Islam: Myths, Apologies, and the Limits of Feminist Critique calls for a shift away from the unproductive paradigm of us vs. the West that has informed discourse on Muslim women and feminism in the post-9/11 era. Bouachrine challenges and calls for further challenge to the long-celebrated myths and ideologies that have circulated in academic and non-academic circles about Muslim women and the role of feminism, both within and outside the Muslim world. Nº de ref. de la librería AAS9780739179062

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Descripción Lexington Books, United States, 2014. Hardback. Estado de conservación: New. 231 x 155 mm. Language: English . Brand New Book. Ibtissam Bouachrine s Women and Islam: Myths, Apologies, and the Limits of Feminist Critique calls for a shift away from the unproductive paradigm of us vs. the West that has informed discourse on Muslim women and feminism in the post-9/11 era. Bouachrine challenges and calls for further challenge to the long-celebrated myths and ideologies that have circulated in academic and non-academic circles about Muslim women and the role of feminism, both within and outside the Muslim world. Nº de ref. de la librería AAS9780739179062

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