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Islam In America

Islam In America

Role of Women Archives

“How are you queer and Muslim at the same time?”

posted by Suzy Shuraym

As the 21st Century rolls along, American Muslims are dealing with ever more complicated questions regarding religious observance and personal behavior. Here’s what one Muslima has to say: “Yes, it’s possible to be queer and Muslim” “I don’t need to […]

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Qu’ran Recitation Apps That Don’t Include Female Voices

posted by Suzy Shuraym

As the Independence Day celebrations draw near, it’s time to talk (once again) about the role of women in American Islam. Yes, this blog (despite digressions abroad) centers on Muslims in the United States. Women here are regarded differently than […]

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The Hijab Dilemma

posted by Suzy Shuraym

“Every time I walk into the room, the first thought is, ‘There’s a Muslim,’ ” said Ms. [Zahra] Cheema, 25, the American-born daughter of Pakistani immigrants, describing that moment when she meets with a potential employer or argues a case […]

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Hijab as Religious Expression

posted by Suzy Shuraym

“The Supreme Court ruled 8-1 on Monday that retailer Abercrombie & Fitch may have violated workplace discrimination law when it turned down a Muslim job applicant because she wore a hijab, even though her religious beliefs never came up in […]

“Headscarves and Hymens”

posted by Suzy Shuraym

“Headscarves and Hymens: Why the Middle East Needs a Sexual Revolution,” a new book by Mona Eltahawy, should be required reading for every American Muslim woman (it’ll take longer to enlighten the men). Snippet: “I think if you whittle them […]

Women’s Photography in Casablanca

posted by Suzy Shuraym

“During the first two weeks of April, the city of Casablanca, Morocco, will become a haven for public art. The Billboard Festival, an art festival of epic proportions, will take over 63 billboards throughout the city to showcase photography produced […]

Women and Sharia

posted by Suzy Shuraym

“No group is more harmed by sharia than Muslim women — a reflection in part of the patriarchal tribal culture out of which Islamic law emerged.” Admittedly, the writer is Ayaan Hirsi Ali, a controversial figure in Islam. However, she […]

Islam and Middle School in NYC

posted by Suzy Shuraym

Sharon Otterman, a reporter for The New York TimesMK/I> penned a thoughtful article on Sandra Ibrahim. The middle school student’s tentative steps toward wearing hijab have been met with derision, teasing and hazing. This writer wonders whether this Arab custom […]

ISIS Continues to Horrify the World

posted by Suzy Shuraym

From executing prisoners to enslaving captives, the brigands known as ISIS continue to horrify the world. Here, courtesy of theGuardian, is the latest: “During their bloody rampage [last summer], Isis kidnapped an estimated 5,000 Yazidi women and children, the majority […]

The Day the Queen Drove the King

posted by Suzy Shuraym

Just in case you missed it, this story is viral on the web: When Saudi Arabia’s late King Abdullah visited Queen Elizabeth in 1998 at her Scotland estate, Balmoral, she got behind the wheel of her Land Rover to give […]

Repressive Gender Laws

posted by Suzy Shuraym

Saudi Arabia is the only country on Earth where women are prohibited from driving. How in the world do we let a petroleum producing country get away with that? Why aren’t American Muslim women ridiculing the aging Saudi princes for […]

Saudia to Segregate Airplane Seats

posted by Suzy Shuraym

Somehow it’s comforting to know that both Saudia Arabians and ultra-Orthodox Jewish men are stuck in the same time warp. Saudia is poised to begin seating that does not allow men to sit next to unrelated women. The haredim have […]

Egypt’s Turn to be Tone Deaf

posted by Suzy Shuraym

Earlier this week, the Administrative Court of Alexandria, Egypt, banned a festival held each year for decades in honor of a Moroccan rabbi. According to the report in WorldPost, “local residents…objected to the mingling of men and women and the […]

Arrested for Driving While Female

posted by Suzy Shuraym

Here we go again. Two women have been arrested in Saudi Arabia for the crime of driving. Seriously? Yeah: only in Saudi Arabia. But, why? We all know Saudi women (and girls) who have driven cars in the kingdom — […]

Women at Work in Saudi Arabia

posted by Suzy Shuraym

It has always seemed strange to me that many in the Muslim world continue to relegate half the population to the shadows. Yes, I’m talking about the role of women — and that’s especially true in places such as Saudi […]

The Third Generation Dilemma

posted by Suzy Shuraym

Some American mosques are altering their programs to suit the needs of the Second- and Third-Generation Muslim immigrants — those young people who were born in the United States. An article last week in the Wall Street Journal pointed out […]

“Honor” Killing in Pakistan

posted by Suzy Shuraym

Are we mired in the past? Do we condone “honor” killings, such as this one in broad daylight in front of a courthouse in Lahore, Pakistan? A pregnant 25-year-old killed by her father and brothers for marrying for love? The […]

Condemned to Death? In the 21st Century? Really?

posted by Suzy Shuraym

Here we go again. Yet another idiotic decision by a court that causes Americans to consider Islam a barbaric religion. How can it be possible in the 21st Century that a personal belief merits the death penalty in a country […]

The Boko Haram Conundrum

posted by Suzy Shuraym

Sometimes a person’s gotta wonder what gets into some people’s minds. Take Boko Haram for example. These self-proclaimed Islamists in Nigeria are doing more harm to the reputation of Muslims worldwide (but especially in the West) than anyone since Al […]

Gender Segregation

posted by Suzy Shuraym

Religious Freedom, Secular Forum, penned by Kenan Malik and printed in The New York Times discusses a topic that has come up many times in non-Muslim-majority countries: “Should gender segregation be allowed in Muslim public meetings.” Please note that we’re […]

Richard Dawkins is Not an Islamophobe

posted by Suzy Shuraym

“The fact [Richard] Dawkins presents – that so few Muslims have won Nobel Prizes — does raise legitimate questions that Dawkins himself addresses in a blog post about the controversy he stirred up by his tweet. He points out that […]

One Reason Islam is Viewed Negatively

posted by Suzy Shuraym

In the eyes of most of the world, there is no reason for the capricious restrictions on women’s movement in Saudi Arabia. Is there another country in the world that restricts driving to one sex? When women drive on Saudi […]

As Long As These Things Happen…

posted by Suzy Shuraym

the hijab will remain more of a political statement than a religious one. If a woman in Sudan who refuses to wear hijab faces flogging, her civil liberties are in peril. I’ll wager that most American Muslims — men and […]

The Rise of Hijab Fashion Bloggers

posted by Suzy Shuraym

“In the last few years, a growing community of hijab fashion bloggers has changed the idea of what it means to be a modern Muslim woman,” writes Vanessa Rosales on The Daily Beast. Learn about hijab high fashion here. It […]

“She Who Tells a Story”

posted by Suzy Shuraym

“She Who Tells a Story” introduces the pioneering work of twelve leading women photographers from Iran and the Arab world: Jananne Al-Ani, Boushra Almutawakel, Gohar Dashti, Rana El Nemr, Lalla Essaydi, Shadi Ghadirian, Tanya Habjouqa, Rula Halawani, Nermine Hammam, Rania […]

Job Opening: Muslim Chaplain

posted by Suzy Shuraym

Here’s the notice, courtesy of the Pluralism Project: Wellesley College, Wellesley, Massachusetts, is seeking a Muslim Chaplain to serve as a member of the College’s Multifaith Religious Life Team. The Muslim Chaplain will also serve as a member of the […]

Arab Men and Arab Women

posted by Suzy Shuraym

“Despite what you see on TV, Arab men today want equality for their daughters, love in their marriages, and, yes, condoms.” So says Marcia C. Inhorn in “I Am With the Uprising of Arab Women” . “Arab men in the […]

Meanwhile, in Afghanistan….

posted by Suzy Shuraym

Afghanistan Women’s Rights Abuses Prevail Despite New Law, U.N. Says. What’s so difficult about the concept of a nation’s future depending on women as well as men? Putting handcuffs on half the population does nothing except further ignorance. Muslim-majority countries […]

The Politics of Hijab

posted by Suzy Shuraym

As we all know, the definition of hijab varies by place of origin and other cultural determinants. One look at the variations is captured by Boushra Almutawakel, a photographer from Yemen. “Unveiling an Arab Woman’s Experience With a Headscarf”

Good News from Egypt

posted by Suzy Shuraym

“Egypt’s streets have long been a perilous place for women, who are frequently heckled, grabbed, threatened and violated while the police look the other way. Now, during the country’s tumultuous transition from authoritarian rule, more and more groups are emerging […]

Is Islam Misogynistic?

posted by Suzy Shuraym

“As an Arab American woman raised in a conservative Muslim family, I would say that yes, Islam is a misogynistic religion.” Here’s the source for the quote: Is Islam Misogynistic? Do you agree?

Why the Taliban Fears Teenage Girls

posted by Suzy Shuraym

“A teenage girl speaking out for girls’ education is just about the most terrifying thing in the world for the Taliban. She is not some Western NGO activist who just parachuted into Pashtun country to hand out ESL textbooks. She […]

Now It’s Up to the Pakistanis

posted by Suzy Shuraym

“’Let this be a lesson’, a spokesman for the Pakistani Taliban, Ehsanullah Ehsan, said afterward. He added that if [Malala Yousafzai] survives, the Taliban would again try to kill her.” (That’s from Nicholas D. Kristof’s editorial in the New York […]

Good News from Pakistan

posted by Suzy Shuraym

Pakistan Erupts in Anger Over Taliban’s Shooting of Schoolgirl That’s the headline in today’s New York Times. The article goes on to say, “Pakistanis from across the political and religious spectrum united in revulsion at the attack on the 14-year-old […]

There We Go Again: Taliban Edition

posted by Suzy Shuraym

What planet do they live on? “Taliban says it shot ‘infidel’ Pakistani teen for advocating girls’ rights”

Women Can’t Make the Hajj?

posted by Suzy Shuraym

“Nigerian officials say 908 Muslim women pilgrims traveling to Mecca face deportation from Saudi Arabia for traveling without male relatives.” Read the rest here. What would the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) say?

Iran Bans Women From 77 College Majors

posted by Suzy Shuraym

The BBC reports from Iran that “over 30 universities have agreed to ban women from about 80 different degrees such as engineering, business, nuclear physics, and computer science”. Read about it here. “Iranian Nobel Peace Laureate Shirin Ebadi told the […]

Sometimes Words are Insufficient

posted by Suzy Shuraym

What do you think about this suggestion from televangelist Pat Robertson? “Become Muslim So [You] Can Beat [Your] Wife”.

Why is the Muslim Brotherhood Stuck on Rerun?

posted by Suzy Shuraym

“Women are erratic and emotional, and they make good wives and mothers — but never leaders or rulers. That, at least, is what Osama Abou Salama, a professor of botany at Cairo University and a member of the Muslim Brotherhood, […]

Previous Posts

"How are you queer and Muslim at the same time?"
As the 21st Century rolls along, American Muslims are dealing with ever more complicated questions regarding religious observance and personal behavior. Here's what one Muslima has to say: "Yes, it’s possible to be queer and Muslim" "I ...

posted 10:55:47am Jul. 20, 2015 | read full post »

Here We Go Again
Yet another gunman with an Arabic name has opened fire in an American city. This time the gunman was born in Kuwait and the city was Chattanooga, Tennessee. Those killed: four United States Marines. According to the New York Times: "The ...

posted 2:43:39am Jul. 17, 2015 | read full post »

Qu'ran Recitation Apps That Don’t Include Female Voices
As the Independence Day celebrations draw near, it's time to talk (once again) about the role of women in American Islam. Yes, this blog (despite digressions abroad) centers on Muslims in the United States. Women here are regarded differently ...

posted 7:16:51pm Jul. 02, 2015 | read full post »

Stories of Resilience
Theme for the 52nd annual convention of the Islamic Society of North America is "Stories of Resilience: Strengthening the American Muslim Narrative". The confab takes place September 4 through 7, 2015, in the Donald E. Stephens Convention ...

posted 1:40:40pm Jun. 22, 2015 | read full post »

No-Fly List Dispute
"Four Muslim men who have accused FBI agents of putting them on a no-fly list because they refused to become informants want to pursue damages against the agents even though the travel ban has been lifted, the men's lawyers told a federal judge ...

posted 1:38:23pm Jun. 18, 2015 | read full post »

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