Tuesday, April 04, 2006

The Oppression of Muslim Women in Egypt


In the next few posts, I will tackle many social ills in Egypt and will show you how they are related to the teaching of Muhammad. Today, I will speak about the inhumane treatment of Muslim women in Egypt. Did you know the following facts?
1. Egyptian Muslim women can not have marriage contracts with men on their own since they have to have male guardians (i.e. father/uncle/ brother) signing for them
2. Their testimony is not acknowledged in court if they contradict the testimonies of men
3. They are not allowed to have the custody of their children once they reach the age of 12
4. They are not allowed to have military jobs
5. They are not allowed to run for presidents (Nawal el Saadawy tried and they did not let her)
6. They are not allowed to marry men of other faiths
7. They are not allowed to remarry within 3 months of their divorce
8. They are not allowed to become police officers (exceptions are in tourism police)
9. They are not allowed to pray in the main halls of mosques- they do pray in the gardens of mosques though!
10. They can not leave the country without the permission of their husbands
11. They do not have the right to know if their husbands married other women
12. If they decided not to have sex with their husbands, Allah will send his angels to punish them, but if men decided not to have sex with their women, they are encouraged to do that because this is a form of discipline
13. They are forced to wear hegab (head cover) in many Egyptian ministries (e.g awkaf)
14. They can only get a divorce if their husbands approve and their husbands can place them in a house of obedience (beet el taaah) if they feel that they are rebellious. If these women refuse to go to these houses they are called “nashez,” or pariah. (there is a new law that allow women to seek divorce but it is very difficult to implement it)
15. Egyptian Muslim women get half of the inheritance of their brothers (Christians imitate this sick tradition)

These conditions are based on the sick teaching of Muhammad who called women “deficient in their beliefs and their minds.” This is the same pervert who said that most hell dwellers are women. What do you expect? His teachings are translated into Muslim women’s oppression. Please see this post for more information on how muhammad viewed women

Every time I meet a Muslim woman, I want to scream at her face and say: “Cannot you see how your prophet failed you and helped create a sick society that abuses and oppresses you? Can you take off this head cover, which is a sign of your own slavery, humiliation and submission? When the hell are you going to wake up? You constitute half of Egypt’s society and your submission is a sign of this society’s devastation.

You know you can add to this terrible list if you wish, and you can mention some of the travesties against Muslim women in freaken Saudi Arabia (i.e. they are not allowed to vote or drive a car or travel in the streets alone.”

22 Comments:

Blogger xavier said...

Maged:
Have you read at Muttawa's blog that 5 women have decided to undergo sex change operations? The real inquistorial police basically shrugged its shoulders as there's no law that deals with this phenomeon so they won't be arrested. Geez that tells me all I need to know about just how oppressive Islam is towards women.

You didn't mention education: are Moslem girls pulled out of school as soon as they get their first peroid?
What's (unofficial) illiteracy rate of Moslem women vis-à-vis the Christians?
What jobs can women do besides doctor, teacher and nurse?

What's a house of obedience?
I suspect that other Moslem counries have it worse since Egypt has historically been the most culturally advanced in the Arar world (sorta like saying that East Germany was the most advanced communist country)

xavier

10:21 PM  
Blogger maged salamah said...

Xavier,
There are many Egyptian Muslim communities that do not encourage the college education of girls. Rather, they prepare them to be housewives. Also, they marry them to many rich Arab men at a very young age.
I do not have any statistics about the difference between Christians and Muslims in this regard, but ignorance and sexism pervade and permeate our society.

If a Muslim woman is lucky enough she can do any job. However, she has to really persevere and work much harder to conquer some of the barriers erected against her.

House of obedience is the Muslim term for the house in which a man has to place his wife if she does not follow his orders.

Egypt is far more advanced in women's rights than the tent dwellers in the Persian gulf.

Xavier, Thanks for your emails. Please understand that I do not respond to my emails for security reasons.

7:40 AM  
Blogger xavier said...

Maged:
Thanks for the updates and explanation of certain practices. No worries; I simply assumed that you were very busy and would respond to me when you had the time. Would you still like me to send you articles of interest?
What about the rest of North Africa? Like say Morocco?

Thanks again!
xavier

8:11 AM  
Blogger maged salamah said...

Xavier,
I enjoy receiving your links. Please continue to send them. The rest of North Africa does not differ a lot from Egypt. However, Tunisia is the most progressive country in the Arab world. They actually have a law against polygamy.

6:28 PM  
Blogger xavier said...

Maged:
OK will do. And thanks for the update on the Magreb
xavier

5:58 PM  
Blogger maged salamah said...

Sure Xavier

4:41 PM  
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5:48 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

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2:18 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It seems like you have one big chip on your shoulder.

You should respect other people's customs and traditions, and get off your self righteous hobby horse.

Ant

2:05 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

good post. Nice to finally see somebody stating some interestng facts about what Mohammed said. I hate it when women claim that Mohammed was some sort of feminist who gave them more rights.
Even if he did (I don't know if it is true), that doesn't mean he was a feminist. It is time that Muslim women (and all women in fact) determine who they are and what their value is on their own, instead of relying on some (patriarchal) textbooks.

4:34 PM  
Blogger Farida said...

Maged,

I agree with you to some extent that women are oppressed in Egypt however that it is not entirely Muhammed's (pbuh) fault. Muhammed is long gone over 1400 years ago. I believe it is the interpretation of people like you which causes this oppression to take place. Let me elaborate.
- Women not allowed to become president? - yes it is oppression but where does it mention in the Qu'ran that women should not lead? Back in Muhammed's day Khadija his wife was the head of the trading market in Mecca so please get your facts right.
- When men are justifiably able to marry four women - it was because at the time men were in fact marrying 20 women at once so it was the norm at the time. I personally do not agree with it since nowadays it conflicts with my social code of conduct.
- HIJAB: Now here you are entirely mistaken. Muhamed said that it is compulsory for women to wear the hijab BUT women had the freedom to do as they please. The problem arises when the EGYPTIAN MEN are forcing their wives and daughters to wear the hijab. This is not about Muhammed, this is about ignorance in the society and lack of education.
- Beating you wives? - well, do you have recorded proof that Muhamed has ever hit any of his wives before? No and when it says in the Qu'ran to beat your wives, 'BUT NOT SEVERELY'. Did you know, and this is a statistic my friend, that 'almost 2 out of 3 females in the U.S population have been attacked by a family member or a person with which they are acquainted' - reference: http://www.athealth.com/Consumer/Disorders/DomViolFacts.html

I mean what you're doing here is 'bitching' about the Egyptian society when in fact many other societies have many flaws which do not entirely agree with the universal social values and ethics, which is why we have different communities. In Saudi Arabia they cut a man's hand if accused of theft. The U.S. have the highest crime rate. In Qatar, alcohol is completely banned.

I'm not saying that the Egyptian mentality should be appreciated, but the contrary, they need proper education and a cleansed approach to culture, tradition and RELIGION.

They don't need someone like you constantly arguing about what Muhamed said or did.

10:21 AM  
Blogger delightfulsin_vittorio said...

man are you stupid or ARE you stupid ? islam is bigger and stronger than u think..

read this u prick, and check out what the cnn had to say about islam, and this goes for all of u who doubt islam, and im sorry to inform u that all of ur efforts are as fruitless and as vain as ur life..


Fastest-growing religion

The second-largest religion in the world after Christianity, Islam is also the fastest-growing religion. In the United States, for example, nearly 80 percent of the more than 1,200 mosques have been built in the past 12 years.

Some scholars see an emerging Muslim renaissance as Islam takes root in many traditionally Christian communities.

7:49 PM  
Blogger animalluver7788 said...

Okay, first off, You are WAY OFF.
Excuse you. But i think you are under a HUGE mis-conception. Most of the things on your list are very wrong. You seriously need to check your facts.
And what right do you have to critisize someone else's beliefs?!? What is it to you if a woman covers her hair from PERVERTED men. For your information; the hijab symbolizes that a woman has grown, and she WANTS (if she doesn't want to cover, she does not have to. we all have free will) to keep her beauty to herself, and her husband (if she is married.) I'm a muslim, AND an egyptian. I've lived in MANY places, and things have completly changed.
They can get divorced if they want too. But it's more complicated for a woman that a man. But the complication is not because of Islam. It is because most Arab men are controlling, and ignorant. The society in egypt could be FAR better if they were EDUCATED.
And muslim women get half the inheritance of thier brothers because a man needs the money more than a woman does. In our culture, a man is the one who has to provide the woman with a home, and everything she needs. Therefore, men usually need more of the inheritance. It's no big deal. And, nowadays, women can do any job they please.
It is not fair for you to judge anyone. What you have writted, is not only WRONG, but you are being absolutely ignorant. Who do you think you are?? I could probably make more accusations against YOUR country/religion/culture. But i won't, because I'm a muslim. And we are taught to RESPECT the beliefs of others. Instead of WASTING your time trying to change how Muslim women are treated, you could try to stop the war in other countries...such as Palestine for example??? Did you ever think about how many KIDS die there, EVERY DAY?? What about the people that STARVE to death??? MAYBE we should think about them, instead of wasting time crtisizing others, and their beleifs. Or better yet, you should think about how you can make YOURSELF better, rather than picking at other people's flaws.
I really wish you luck, because you're going to need it if you keep thinking the way you do.

3:24 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

you REALLY should do your research better.
women must defintely can divorce their husband.
Brothers get more inheritance than the sister because its the brothers responsiblity to look after the sister always that means using the money that was given to him to look after himself and his sister - even though the sister was given some inheritance too - guess what? She has that all to herself and the brother isnt allowed to use it yet he has to spend on her the money he was given :) !

the muslim woman has her own property and she can choose whether to work and if she does that money is completely hers, and the husband has to maintain her and look after her even when she has her own money to do so.

Honey, nearly all muslim women decide wear the hejab out of CHOICE. Yup im sorry to disappoint you. we love the hejab, its beautiful. Y u think reverts wear it so proudly and happily too? Their non-muslim parents dont want it. You are so filled with hatred its sad, really you are doing a very lame job.
Any intelligent person would get their information about Islam from real websites. Search Muslim women rights and u see everything we have.

In the west women didnt get rights til 80s, muslim women got it 1400 years ago :) hmmm, do women get same pay as men in the west? are they sex objects? are men disrespectful to women? YAH thought so ;) Good luck dear.

6:15 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Really, it seems that you missunderstand how Islam work and how Islam try to give women rights that would make her superior. First, you mentioned that male guardians are a must for signing a marriage contract. yes that is true because that male guardian would be a kind of defender of that woman whenever that husband dealt illegally with his wife.
second, you mention the subject of testimony which has been proved that women are a lot sensitive and are emotionality weak that they would say something in the side of the accused.
thirdly, you mentioned wrongly the custody of the women's children. this is completely wrong as women are obliged to take care of her children till they are 12 and afterwords the children would be old enough to choose whether to live with their mother or their father. and this is considered a human right of the children. Bearing in mind that in the west, children leave their parents home at the same age.
fourth, women are not allowed to have military jobs because such jobs are against their nature as women biologically are weak.
The fifth point is the presidential issue. As we said before, women are weak and quite hesitant that they won't be able to rule.
concerning the sixth point, I can say that inside Christianity, one can't marry a man who is christian but from a different church.
the seventh point which is about remarrying after divorce, that's because if the woman is pregnant, their would be problem in the proving of the child's parentage. police officer's are allowed for women but women try to be away of such tough jobs. and you forgot to say that women don't have to attend the military training as the males have to because of the same reason that women couldn't bear such tough training.
Women aren't allowed to pray in the main hall to avoid any parasitical male from watching after her.
concerning leaving the country without their husband's admission, this was an old fashioned law that has been changed.
women have the right to know if their husbands marry another and also they would have the choice to continue her life with her husband after his new marriage or got the divorce.
Having sex between a husband and his wife is considered a way of satisfying Allah that they are doing what they have married to.
No one force a woman to wear hegab as you mentioned. hegab is just a way of satisfying Allah and preserving the women's valuable parts of her body from parasitical men.
nowadays, women can get divorce themselves if they couldn't bear living with her husband.
the inheritance of a woman is half her brother because he is going to be responsible of his sister after their parents death and she needn't spend anything from her own inheritance.
It seems that you ignorant of how the world continue. you forgot that when a father died in Christianity, his wife and daughters should wear black till their death. also you forgot that women in Christianity are not allowed to get divorce. Have you thought of such points before writing your ignorant comments????

5:29 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am married to a muslim egyptian man and whatever I've read in this article has been a reality for me.If it is all Muhammad's fault or no,it's not the main point.I do not care whose fault it is.The truth is that the arab men,in general,are extremelly ignorant and cruel to their wives.They do no care about their feelings at all and they see them as inferior beings.My husband constantly tells me I'm going to hell,but,living with an arab man is already being in hell.How can they mention God's name and talk about God when they do everything totally opposite than what God wants from us.God doesn't care about what religion you follow.HE looks at your heart and action towards people and nature.
I'd would like to congratulate Maged Salamah for trying to awake these women for their own ignorance in letting these kind of men guide and ruin their lives.
My best regards.

1:53 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Treat your women well and be kind to them for they are your partners and committed helpers."
From the last sermon of Prophet Mohammed

7:43 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Fuck whoever wrote that blog.
It is extremely apparent that the writer of this blog is an arrogant uneducated fool who is clearly biased against Islam. I am a Muslim woman from Egypt and what was posted is CLEARLY WRONG AND IDIOTIC. Before writing such things, please justify your so called "did you know" facts. Get your sources right you fucking idiot.

2:29 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

hi. I'm an american woman also married to an Egyptian Muslim. The writer is correct, as the other woman on here said, they do not respect their wife nor their daughter. Their son is treated as king while their daughter can do nothing right no matter how well she behaves. I began to hate my husband and thank God I live in the US where I was allowed to leave him!

2:07 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am a Muslim woman married to a Muslim man. We live in South Africa. Us South Africans like to think we are divers. My husband tries his utmost best to abide to the teachings of Islam, and Islam taught him well...
1) he makes sure me and our children are well fed and clothed at all times.
2) when/If I work, I keep all my money to myself.
3) as a Muslim wife and mother I don't need to cook or clean for him.
4) as far as sex goes, yes we are not spose to say no to our husbands! But he is spose to make(foreplay) us wanted and not demand it jus like that.
5) my husband does not force me to wear hijab, but would really like it if I do

Think of it this way, we keep money in banks, protect our assest as far as we can, cover phones and clench our purses everytime we feel someone wants to take it away from us. Why is it wrong that Islam wants us to do the same with our women. We love our wealth so much! We should love ourselves/women, just as much or even more.
So If u think bout it, Islam does not oppress its women at all.

5:27 PM  

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