Term Paper: Censorship in Islamic Tradition towards Women

By | April 27, 2011

Sample Term Paper

“Censorship is the systematic use of group power to broadly control the freedom of speech and expression, largely in regard to secretive administration matters. It is also used as an act of hiding, removing, altering or destroying copies of art or writing so that general public access to it is partially or completely limited, ” (Chitu, 2006). The censorship in Islam aims to provide for everyone’s needs but some scholars draft new rules specially designed for women whom they think are right that bring about a bad name to Islam (Bhawana, 2005). As a result, they end up curtailing women’s rights. Islam in general does not forbid all these things for women.

Men and women are created equal according to the Quran (Bhawana, 2005) but traditions have had a big impact on the religion and added numerous additions that do not make sense. Censorship in Islamic tradition has negative effects on women because it limits their rights (Yavuz, 2008).

There are several countries in the Middle East that have seemingly strict laws towards women such as Saudi Arabia (Khan, 2009). Saudi women are not allowed to drive, something that does not sit well with the western world. This begs the question, why only in Saudi Arabia? The people and the media keep raising this issue without realizing the consequence of allowing women to drive. Everyone needs to know that in Saudi Arabia it is not just men who are against it. There are women who are against it as well. Add to that opinions of religious scholars and it gives way to a breadth of confusion. It has been said that “women are prohibited to drive” (Shea, 2004) which is not true. It’s traditions that have influenced the opinions of religious people. This has confused people and made them undecided on whether it is right or not. It is illegal for women to drive because of a fatwa from BinBaz who was the grand mufti of Saudi Arabia. Some of his fatwas have been influenced by traditions that advocate the covering of faces by women and so prohibit them to drive, travel or hang out by themselves (Shea, 2004). Most people must listen to what this Islamic scholar says and no one argues with him. There is a lot of pressure on the government and it is trying to do its best.

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