Women In Islamic Cultures Essay

1265 words - 5 pages

Women in Islamic Cultures

For years American women have been and still fight for equality. On the other side

of the world however lies a different story. In the Arab-Muslim society familiar western

concepts of sexual equality and the liberation of women are irrelevant and unnecessary

from local women's point of view. Writing this essay I have explored and was fascinated

by the different definitions of the power of a woman and where exactly it lays.

In Arab-Muslim societies there is a complex, well defined and highly structured set

of gender roles which underpin personal and public life, and gives marriage and the

family a central importance, whereas in the U.S. gender roles have blended over the last

few decades to a point where both women and men have the same goals, with priority on

career advancement and high social status. It seems that all that separate women and men

in the U.S. are stereotypes and the ever disputable "Glass Ceiling." With such diverse

emphasis on life, to compare in what ways the power of women in the U.S. and in the

middle eastern societies are different we would first have to define power,

Power- an ability || physical strength || controlling influence || a person of great influence

and authority.

Authority and influence are recognized in different places in these two completely

different societies. An Arabian women's realm is the home. Motherhood, childcare,

cooking, cleaning and managing domestic affairs make-up the primary female sphere of

influence and activity.

Women in the U.S. cannot run away from these responsibilities, after all women in the

US do clean their houses, take care of children and manage domestic affairs, however, to

different extent and there is defiantly much more desire to work and earn money than in

the Muslim society. A Muslim woman views waged work as a necessary evil. They have

to earn money to help feed the family but they fear that it interferes with their "real work"

of managing domestic affairs and looking after children. All women emphasis that their

home life in contrary to women in the U.S. remains the number one priority.

The local women in the Arab-Muslim society are strong and mutually self-reliant. Female

friends and family support each other and depend on each other for assistance in their

work and domestic life. Female friendship involve very strong and intimate bonds.

American women do not usually confide in such a way to their fellow female friends and

manage to not involve outsiders. They derive most of their worth from their social status

and how much they have achieve materialistically and domestically. Arab-Muslim women

derive their worth from motherhood ( A women is judged b the number of children she


The power of an arab women is within her circle of friends and fellow females they

support each other and help...

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