By Azza Basarudin
In recent times, worldwide consciousness has curious about how girls in groups of Muslims are revitalizing Islam by way of linking interpretation of spiritual rules to the safety of rights and freedoms. Humanizing the Sacred demonstrates how Sunni ladies activists in Malaysia are fracturing institutionalized Islamic authority by way of producing new understandings of rights and redefining the ethical duties in their group. in keeping with ethnographic learn of Sisters in Islam (SIS), a nongovernmental association girls selling justice and equality, Basarudin examines SIS contributors' involvement within the creation and transmission of Islamic wisdom to reformulate criminal codes and reconceptualize gender discourses. by means of weaving jointly women's lived realities, feminist interpretations of Islamic texts, and Malaysian cultural politics, this ebook illuminates how a localized fight of saying rights takes form inside a transnational panorama. It presents an essential knowing of ways ladies "live" Islam in the course of the integration of piety and cause and the results of women's political activism for the transformation of Islamic culture itself.
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Extra resources for Humanizing the sacred : Sisters in Islam and the struggle for gender justice in Malaysia
One of SIS’s first initiatives was a symposium in KL titled “The Modern Nation State and Islam” that addressed the role of religion as a governing force in an era of globalization. The members worked closely with Abdullahi An-Na’im, a Sudanese scholar whose work was the members’ guiding principle in understanding the interconnection of religion, law, and politics. The blending of feminist interpretation, constitutional law, and human rights principles has since characterized the organization’s approach to activism.
The “woman question,” then, revolves around issues of gendered power dynamics, (hetero-) sexuality, legal rights, education, and employment, as well as modesty and practices of piety. The following statements by Malaysian politicians capture the current climate of gender issues and women’s rights. In some developed countries, the men were allowed to vote before women but, in Malaysia, women had the right to vote from the start. Don’t think that everything is better (in the developed nations) as we are way ahead especially in terms of women’s rights.
Serves her right for getting raped. She is selling [her body] for cheap. She is selling her calf, her face, and her thigh for cheap. So, rape [her]. Who cares? (The late Nik Abdul Aziz Nik Mat, Parti Islam Se-Malaysia leader, quoted from YouTube video 2009)1 The first and second statements come from members of the ruling coalition Barisan Nasional (BN, National Front), which forms the state government, and the third from the tenacious Islamist opposition leader, the late Nik Abdul Aziz Nik Mat.