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The Status of Women in Islam

The status of women in society is neither a new issue nor is it a fully settled one. This paper is intended to provide a brief and authentic exposition of what Islam stands for in this regard. The teachings of Islam are based essentially on the Qur’an (God’s revelation) and Hadeeth (elaborations by Prophet Muhammad). The paper starts with a brief survey of the status of women in the pre-Islamic era. It then focuses on these major questions: What is the position of Islam regarding the status of woman in society? How similar or different is that position from ‘the spirit of the time,” which was dominant when Islam was revealed? How would this compare with the “rights’ which were finally gained by woman in recent decades?

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