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Title: Women in the writings of Muhammad 'Abduh
Author: Khreegi, Yusra
ISNI:       0000 0004 5346 6533
Awarding Body: SOAS, University of London
Current Institution: SOAS, University of London
Date of Award: 2014
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The 'Woman question' in Islam, under its various titles - 'women in Islam', 'women's rights in Islam', 'the status of women in Islam', 'gender in Islam' - is one that has been a topic of heated debate for the last century, and continues to be a field of intense debate and thriving scholarship. Likewise, pioneers of modern Islamic reform are often referred to in relation to modern discourses on gender, and the issue of gender is often touched on in discussions of these pioneers' reform projects, but often in a generic and superficial manner. While the Egyptian reformist scholar Muhammad 'Abduh is a figure often referred to in this context, this aspect of his thought has never been studied in detail. This study aims to deepen the study of these two questions - gender and reform - and the intersection between them. Various general books on 'the father of Islamic reform' exist, often devoting a few pages to 'women's reform' (or more commonly referring to the question of women's reform under the few pages devoted to 'Abduh's 'social reform'), creating a rather vague view of this critical figure's views on this topical question, often with unsubstantiated generalisations. This study aims at addressing this through a detailed study and analysis of 'Abduh's own discourse on women in order to discover its themes, distinctive characteristics, the questions it poses and the answers it attempts to give, as well as the tensions and contradictions within it. The study locates the gender question within the bigger context of the reform discourse that emerged in a specific historical context in response to the Muslim world's encounter with modernity. The study further addresses the extent of 'Abduh's influence on subsequent discourses on women and his legacy which continues to be contested and competed over. The study provides, for the first time, a detailed study of 'Abduh's writings on women and gender, based on primary sources, and addresses the overlaps between various rival trends often seen as distinct, pointing to the multiple and diverse roots of the contemporary genre of 'Muslim feminism', which indeed draws influence from the reformist views of 'Abduh, but not necessarily through a single linear and coherent route.
Supervisor: Zebiri, Katherine Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available