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Women and the Koran: The Status of Women in Islam Hardcover – September 1, 1997

2.1 out of 5 stars 47 customer reviews

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Review

The Koran tells us that "Men are in charge of women, because Allah hath made the one of them to excel the other." In Women and the Koran: The Status of Women in Islam, Anwar Hekmat tells us of the brutality inflicted on women in the Islam religion in the name of God. Hekmat clearly outlines all the basic rights given to men through Mohammed and The Koran, which include: the right to multiple wives and concubines; the right to beat and rape one's wife if she refuses to submit to sex; the right to terminate a marriage at any time without legal process; the right to all children and property from the marriage if divorced; the right to bring one's wife to court for suspected adultery; and, if she is found guilty, the right to bury her in the ground up to her waist and stone here to death (as was done in at least four cases in Iran in the last seven years). These same rights do not extend to women in regards to their husbands. Hekmat argues that the Muslim religion created by Mohammed is a barbaric tradition, created more to bring glory to God. His argument is compelling. Hekmat paints a picture of Mohammed as a cruel dictator who orchestrated horrific purges on his enemies, and captured many of the women to be used as wives (of which he had 15) or concubines for his own pleasure. Mohammed is also depicted with insatiable sexual appetites that knew little boundaries, including that of age. His favorite wife was nine when they married, and he brought her toys to the bed on their wedding night. Much of the Islamic religion, claims Hekmat, is clever propaganda simply created to allow Mohammed to do as he pleased. Indeed, Hekmat argues as strongly against the entire Islamic religion as he does against the disparity against women. The book is well researched and clearly organized, and while the language becomes awkward in spots, it is still a good read. His thesis is that the Muslim religion's treatment of women should be re-thought and quickly. This book helps remind us that equality is a matter of perspective, and lends itself to shaping your perception of women's equality in the eyes of religion in a whole new way. -- From Independent Publisher

About the Author

Anwar Hekmat, a distinguished scholar, was brought up in Muslim Europe.
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 278 pages
  • Publisher: Prometheus Books (September 1, 1997)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1573921629
  • ISBN-13: 978-1573921626
  • Product Dimensions: 6.4 x 0.9 x 9.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 2.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (47 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,859,552 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By A Customer on February 11, 1999
Format: Hardcover
Just one look at the emotional, angry reviews of this well-written book made me want to buy it. After reading it, I was glad I did because the author really lays it out. Islam must first allow criticism and scrutiny from within and without like all the other religions do. As it stands now, saying anything negative about it is a good way to get yourself killed... unless you are lucky enough to live in a free country. Interested readers should also try "Why I Am Not A Muslim". The only way this religion can survive the light of scrutiny and the anger of millions of women is to change, and quickly. Women should rise up and put a fatwa on the males who use Islam to deprive them of their basic human rights.
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By A Customer on September 14, 1999
Format: Hardcover
The movie critic Michael Medved once described himself as a "glorified sewer inspector," and that is surely what Anwar Hekmat (not Helmat, despite what it says above) is. Anyone who undertakes to explore Muhammad's marriage to a 9-year-old girl, his copulation with her in a room filled with her dolls, his marriage to at least 11 (and possibly as many as 20) other women, and his other activities relating to women also has spent some time in the historical sewer.
This book details the entire repressive sexual regime of the traditional Muslim societies, including Iran, Iraq, Saudi Arabia, the U.A.E., and Pakistan. (The author didn't get to describe the barabarians currently in control of Afghanistan, because they were not yet in power when the book was finished in 1996.) It's astounding, yet accurate: I know an American woman who went to visit a sheik in Iraq in the 1980s and was followed around by pebble-throwing boys because she wasn't wearing the traditional Muslim covering. No one disciplined the boys, because it was she who was in the "wrong": she had dared to show her female head in public!
Marrying 9-year-olds, it seems, became a tradition with the caliphs (heads of Islam) after Muhammad, and the author shows that child brides are still favored in much of the Muslim world today. It must be okay, because the "Prophet" did it!
The most useful part of this book, perhaps, is the extensive treatment of the historical background of the sections of the Koran and the hadiths dealing with women.
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Format: Hardcover
I totally agree with the author. I could have done writting the similar book to expose the injustice done in the name islam. Many thanks for the courage to write out despite fatwas from religious bigots. I now dare declare that I have abandon Islam for secular humanism.
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Format: Hardcover
I totally agree with the author point of view. I myself was muslim women living under lies of islam. All the time I over heard pious muslim men talking about great the pleasure of having sex with underage virgin girls and condemning about how sexually tasteless a non virgin girls to have sex with. Islam has the double stand of giving men all the sexual freedom and supressing women's rights.
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Format: Hardcover
I am happy that someone had the courage and opportunity to say the things this author has. It has become politically incorrect to say negative things about any religion or religious group. However, in our drive to be "tolerant" we often ignore the very real, negative and sometimes dangerous aspects of certain belief systems. This is a book worth reading.
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Format: Hardcover
This book really hits the point.
The point of "women in Islam" is not so much whether or not women are allowed to become doctors etc. However there is a big disparity in Islam as soon as human sexuality is concerned: Whereas an unmarried muslim male can have as much premarital sex as he likes, a muslim woman is strictly obliged to preserve her virginity to "keep the honor of the family". If she does not do so, she must expect to be killed by her own family (in order to re-install the "honor of the family"). And those are facts proven by evidence.
So as long is there is no sexual equality between the sexes, there is no equality between the sexes at all.
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By A Customer on August 6, 1999
Format: Hardcover
This is truly a wonderful book.As a woman,I am a beliver in woman's rights.Islam simply portrays woman to be subordinate to men.This is why I left Islam.Look whats happening in the Middle East,woman are tortured on everyday basis.Islam supports brutality towards woman.The so-called prophet Mohammad was nothing but a sexist.
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By A Customer on October 26, 2000
Format: Hardcover
This book tells you the facts.
Let me present some interesting quotes to show what I mean:
About child-marriage:
" 1. Child marriage is lawful in Islam and the neccessary contract can be drawn up between the guardian and the would-be husband when the girl is no more than five or six years old. In this sense marriage is nothing but the sale of a minor girl. We shall refer to this in more detail in the following chapter.
2. The consent of the girl is not prerequisite for the marriage of a female child to a grown man over fifty.
3. Sexual intercourse of a fifty year old man with a mere girl is not something to be ashamed of. On the contrary, the act of Muhammad in taking a child as his wife set a precedent, which then became a tradition (sunna) in the Muslim lawbooks and jurisprudence.
4. Despite the fact that the girl Aisha was frightened when Muhammad approached her sexually, the Prophet went on to consummate the marriage regardless of the consequences. Whereas sexual intercourse with a girl in her childhood is a punishable offense in most countries of the world today, this deplorable custom still goes on in some Muslim nations. The girl was so small that according to the reliable Islamic biographers, she took along her toys and playthings to the Prophets bedchamber: 'The little girl was allowed to keep her toys and her dolls and sometimes the Prophet would play games with her.'
About veilig of women:
"There have also been recorded instances in which two lovers have met secretly and had sexual contact without removing the veil from the woman's face. In the eyes of the uneducated fundamentalist girl, revealing her face to a man who is not her next of kin is an unforgivable crime.
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