‘Reading historical sources throughout the centuries of Islamic history, we find lots and lots of women active in all areas of life, and then suddenly it stops. What happened? How and why have things changed in the last three hundred years to the extent that it is unusual to find women involved in Islamic sciences and, unlike in the past, a few Muslim men would even consider being taught by a Muslim woman? This is a phenomenon which requires in-depth research. It is time to re-examine the sources and re-assess how Muslim women in the past acted so that we can escape the limiting perspective which have come to be the norm. To this end, we will examine three perspectives: the Scholarly Woman, the Political Woman, and the Spiritual Woman.’
About the Author
Aisha Abdurrahman at-Tarjumana Bewley is one of today’s most prolific translators of classical Arabic works into English. Aisha Bewley not only understands Arabic but also she is aware of the basic meanings and nature of the teachings and history of Islam. Being herself a Muslim, Aisha Bewley’s knowledge is born of experience and direct transmission, not simply academic theory and learning by rote. For more than thirty-five years she has been concerned with making the contents of many classical works in Arabic more accessible to English-speaking readers for the first time, including The Noble Qur’an, Al-Muwatta’ of Imam Malik, The Foundations of Islam and Ash-Shifa’ of Qadi iyad and the Tabaqat of Ibn Sa’d.