In the eyes of many Westerners, Muslim women are hidden behind a
veil of negative stereotypes that portray them as either oppressed,
subservient wives and daughters or, more recently, as potential
terrorists. Yet many Muslim women defy these stereotypes by taking
active roles in their families and communities and working to
create a more just society. This book introduces eighteen Muslim
women activists from the United States and Canada who have worked
in fields from social services, to marital counseling, to political
advocacy in order to further social justice within the Muslim
community and in the greater North American society.
Each of the activists has written an autobiographical narrative
in which she discusses such issues as her personal motivation for
doing activism work, her views on the relationship between Islam
and women's activism, and the challenges she has faced and
overcome, such as patriarchal cultural barriers within the Muslim
community or racism and discrimination within the larger society.
The women activists are a heterogeneous group, including North
American converts to Islam, Muslim immigrants to the United States
and Canada, and the daughters of immigrants. Young women at the
beginning of their activist lives as well as older women who have
achieved regional or national prominence are included. Katherine
Bullock's introduction highlights the contributions to society that
Muslim women have made since the time of the Prophet Muhammad and
sounds a call for contemporary Muslim women to become equal
partners in creating and maintaining a just society within and
beyond the Muslim community.
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