Interpretive approaches to Shariah and Domestic Violence in Afghanistan

Islamic feminists such as Azizah Al-Hibri, Fatima Mernissi and Amina Wadud are among those advocating a re-interpretive approach to the Qur’an. They hold the view that current Islamic law is based on patriarchal interpretation of the Qur’an and advocate for a re- interpretation of the Qur’an from the perspective of females. This last view is that which this paper espouses.

The central argument of this paper is that a re- interpretive approach to the Shari’ah can serve to counter the attitudes of conservative Muslims in relation to the inferiority of women that have become ingrained in Afghan society. Such an approach can also serve to challenge the notion that Islam sanctions domestic violence. It is contended that, in light of the continued perpetration of domestic violence in Afghanistan, adopting a grassroots approach that presents an Islamic viewpoint on the issue of domestic violence may ultimately serve to procure greater success than the entirely secular approach that has been adopted up until now. This approach may offer a solution to the de facto realisation of CEDAW General Recommendation 19 and the successful implementation of the EVAW Law.

Click here to read the essay

By Brid Doherty

Volunteer Femin Ijtihad

SOAS, University of London

LL.M Postgraduate Study


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