This is the "Home" page of the "The Middle East" guide.
Alternate Page for Screenreader Users
Skip to Page Navigation
Skip to Page Content

The Middle East  

Last Updated: Aug 15, 2013 URL: Print Guide RSS Updates

Home Print Page

PBS Global Connections

What factors determine the changing roles of women in the Middle East and Islamic societies?


Timeline (requires Flash)
• Text-Only version


UGA Islam Studies

Women in Islam: Muslim Women

The issue of women in Islam is highly controversial. Any materials on this subject, whether in print or online, should be used with caution because of the lack of objectivity. 

  • Islamic Traditions and the Feminist Movement: Confrontation or Cooperation, by Dr. Lois Lamya' al-Faruqi, discusses Islamic perspectives on the status and role of women in Islamic societies as well as the direction of Islamic feminism. (Link fixed March 27, 1999)

    Ending Domestic Violence in Muslim Families by Sharifa Alkhateeb, founder of the North American Council for Muslim Women. 

    Woman Half-the-Man: Crisis of Male Epistemology in Islamic Jurisprudence a scholarly article by Dr. Abdulaziz Sachedina, professor of Islamic Studies at the University of Virginia.

    'A'ishah's Legacy: the struggle for women's rights in Islam by Dr. Amina Wadud, professor in the Department of Philosophy and Religious Studies at Virginia Commonwealth University. Professor Wadud is one of the foremost Muslim feminist scholars. This brief article, published in the New Internationalist (vol. 345, May, 2002), will introduce readers to Islamic feminism.

    For a comprehensive list of links relevant to the issue of women in Islam, see The Muslim Women's Homepage. (Link fixed March 27, 1999.)

    In addition, see the article Women in the Qur'an and Sunnah, which gives a traditional Islamic viewpoint, written by Prof. Abdur Rahman I. Doi, Director, Center for Islamic Legal Studies, Ahmadu Bello University, Zaira, Nigeria

    My Body is My Own Business is the statement of Naheed Mustafa, a young Canadian Muslim woman who has chosen to wear a traditional Islamic headscarf, generally referred to as a "veil" (hijab). (Fixed, June 30, 1999; and again on November 20, 2003)

    Women in Islam by Dr. Nahid Angha, co-director of the International Association of Sufism and founder of the Sufi Women Organization.

    An on-line book written from an Islamic perspective, entitled Women in Islam vs. Women in the Judeo-Christian Tradition, is well-documented and useful to students of this subject (link fixed 15 March, 2006).

  • Women in Islam (link fixed, January 11, 2004) a web site consisting of a Canadian Muslim woman's articles and links, one of which is her article Are You Ready to Meet the Woman Who Can Get By Without Her Looks? (link fixed 17 August 2005).

    Karamah: Muslim Women Lawyers for Human Rights (link fixed, 22 July 2001) is an activist organization with the following stated objectives:

    1. Increase the familiarity of the Muslim community with Islamic, American, and International laws on the issues of human rights;
    2. Advise and assist individuals, institutions, and organizations on matters of human rights as seen from the perspective of Islamic law;
    3. Advise and assist Muslims, particularly women, on matters adversely affecting the free exercise of their religion, freedom of expression, and other constitutional rights in the United States;
    4. Provide educational materials on legal and human rights issues to American Muslim women.

  • Muslim Women's Organizations from This contains descriptions of and links to 13 Muslim Women's organizations. This page is a sections of, which is a comprehensive and superbly designed website dealing with women and Islam.

  • International Muslim Women's Organizations, an extensive annotated list (link fixed 17 August 2005).

  • International Muslim Women's Organizations Contains the names and addresses of six organizations, almost all of which are North American. (Link fixed, October 15, 2001; broken & unarchived as of 15 March, 2006.)

Submit a link

If you find a link that is helpful, please submit it here. 


Arab Spring

Some of these blogs and twitter feeds capture older posts/tweets and others are current.  


Arab Awakening from The Nation


Other Libguides

Check out these other awesome Libguides from 

Duke University

University of Chicago


Primary Sources

Internet History Sourcebooks from Fordham University offer links to a variety of sites containing primary and secondary material. Of particular use are the African and Islamic collections.

The Middle East 1916-2001: A Documentary Record
Part of the Avalon Project at Yale University, this site offers access to legal and governmental digitized documents.

The Middle East Documents includes a smorgasbord of primary source documents relating to the history of the Middle East and especially to the creation of the state of Israel.


Loading  Loading...