This work of Dr. Faruqi’s derives from a collection of her articles in various Islamic, sociological and religious journals. Dr. al-Faruqi brings both a feminine and scholarly approach to the subject, exploring women’s issues within an Islamic framework which are neither apologetic nor polemic or rigid and inflexible. Addressed are issues of Women in a Qur’anic Society, Marriage, Extended Family, and comparisons with modern feminist movements.
In this book, Dr. Lamya al-Faruqi was extremely articulate in clearly identifying women issues in various societies worldwide, including Muslim societies – where in many cases, cultures and traditions are contrary to Islamic principles.
Islam is a way of life dictated by the Quran and Sunnah and are the reference for scholars. In fact, Allah (SWT) said in Chapter 4, Verse 59:
O you who have believed, obey Allah and obey the Messenger and those in authority among you. And if you disagree over anything, refer it to Allah and the Messenger, if you should believe in Allah and the Last Day. That is the best [way] and best in result.
The Quran specifically says, “if you disagree over anything, refer it to Allah and the Messenger” meaning that there is room to differ with the scholars – albeit, with respect and courtesy. The sole points of references are the Quran and the Sunnah. This is why we have different opinions and interpretations of the same text.
In this book, Faruqi brilliantly and clearly separates the three topics: Women, Muslim Society, and Islam. Feminism emerged and became a serious movement in non-Muslim societies before it emerged in Muslim societies.
This book is recommended for our younger generations because of the confusion they may have between what Islam actually is and what Muslim societies are actually practicing.