Regular readers will remember I covered Lejla Kurić’s post on Mo Ansar and Islamic extremism in Bangladesh and that she very kindly allowed me to use her illustration of Malala in my first Huffington Post piece on Assed Baig’s Skin Deep Analysis of the West and Malala.
Lejla has written her response to Mo Ansar’s interview on “Isn’t Islam Anti-Women?”
Ansar arguably exaggerates the importance of Aisha, the wife of the Prophet, and claims that she has been smeared as a “child bride” by those hostile to Islam. He omits to mention that this is also what Islamic scripture, the Hadith, states and that, consequently, it is what many Muslims believe to be true. Ansar’s opinion may or may not have a historical basis but it goes completely against Islamic orthodoxy, which elsewhere he tries to persuade us is the way forward.
On Ansar’s idealised view of Sharia under the Ottoman Empire:
In the Ottoman Empire, Sharia Law governed uniquely Muslim affairs, and any disputes involving a Muslim party were therefore under the jurisdiction of the Sharia courts. Christians and Jews had similar autonomy in their communities. Qanun was legislation enacted by the Sultan, addressing matters not covered by Sharia, mainly relating to the functioning of state institutions. Furthermore, it was drafted by the Sultan’s private secretary, an Islamic scholar, to ensure there would be no conflict between Qanun & Sharia.
How describing Mo Ansar as a feminist leaves a bad taste in the mouth of Muslim feminists:
Feminism is a progressive movement of solidarity and ideas, which fights for the rights and opportunities women are denied for no other reason than that they are women. Ansar, meanwhile, is a religious traditionalist, and religious traditionalists are by their very nature reactionary. He denigrates the struggle for female emancipation and equality and yearns instead for a return to what he pretentiously calls “traditional models of male-female interplay”. That of course is his right in a democracy. But his views have no place in feminism and there is no reason why they should excite any attention whatsoever.
You can read my earlier reply to Mo’s interview “Islam and Women” here.
Article written by John Sargeant on Homo economicus’ Weblog