Friday Links — January 25, 2008

  • A Saudi woman’s parents annul her marriage without her permission because they claim she “married beneath her.” Bad form!

  • A Muslim juror who wears niqab has been asked to remove it.

  • Martina Sabra looks at Islamic feminism in Morocco.

  • Qatari archer/racer Nada Zeidan urges more women to get involved in sports.

  • Senay Özdemir argues that it’s healthy for young Muslim women to experiment sexually.

  • Three Muslim women who feel their imam ignored their concerns because of their gender sue him for a breach of human rights.

  • Kadija Abdul Wahed becomes the first Qatari woman to participate in a horse race. Mashallah!
  • A review about Territories, a play that highlights how a Muslim woman might have been at the heart of the Crusades.

  • The Canadian Press looks at Caramel, an award-winning movie about a beauty salon in Beirut.
  • Kuwaiti education minister Nuriya al-Sabeeh endures a no-confidence vote against those who accuse her of corruption. SNAP!

  • Women can now stay alone in hotels in Saudi Arabia.

  • Since abortion is illegal except in rare medical cases in Malaysia, young women often take abortion pills instead.

  • Turkey moves to end its ban on hejab in universities!

  • An Iraqi refugee tells her story.

  • Melinda

    The Senay Özdemir article is fascinating.

  • Melinda

    The story on abortion pills gives few specifics. What exactly is considered an “abortion pill”?

  • Shawna

    I was thinking the Ozdemir article was very interesting too. I wondered about this: “Children that enjoy the freedom to express their sexual desires in the awareness that sexuality is a normal part of life, grow up to be healthy and balanced individuals. Those who do not get this opportunity run the risk of becoming frustrated and mentally disturbed adolescents. This goes for both boys and girls. Just think of the Arab men who view all females passing by as sex objects and legitimate prey for their harassment.”Is she arguing that it’s natural for men to harass women if they don’t get to have sex at a younger age? Is she intentionally implying young women have to have sex with young men to keep society stable? That men are incapable of controlling their sexual impulses?If so, isn’t this basically the same argument as women baring their legs will drive men mad and that gives men the right to rape them?I think the issue is that we need to raise our kids with higher expectations for maturity so that they can get married at a younger age if they’re ready at that time.I think she has a good point at the base of this, which is that sexual desires are natural, but a parent’s job is to teach their child how to deal with such desires in the way that best pleases Allah rather than the way that best pleases the self/nafs.More reading to do. This week has a fascinating line-up.

  • Zeynab

    Melinda–I don’t know what exactly constitutes an abortion pill. The only one I can think of is RU486, and I’m not sure if that’s the one they’re referring to.As for Ms Özdemir, I think that calling out only Arab guys on harassment is not okay. It’s not just one ethnic group that does it, and using only Arabs as an example has strong racist undertones. I don’t think that she’s intentionally implying that we should all go out and get some ass before getting married; what she’s advocating is openness and breaking down taboos when it comes to sex and sexuality. I agree with most of what she’s saying: I’m a big fan of comprehensive sex education for teenagers–if they’re going to do something, they might as well be informed. Shrouding something in mystery only makes it MORE attractive, especially when you’re young and you have lots of hormones.

  • humblemuslimah

    Assalamu AlaikumAbout the annulled marriage the facts are slighly wrong. The father when he was alive appoved the marriage but after he died it was her half brothers who had the marriage annulled on the grounds of his tribal background.

  • Neil

    regarding the senay ozdemir article, i agree with the idea behind what she’s saying. but to say that kids 15-years-old having sex is perfectly natural and healthy is a bit ridiculous. i don’t think it’s healthy at all, and is infact more of a consequence of overly restrictive parenting, than the answer to it.


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