Essay on Mernissi

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Mernissi Mernissi makes the claim that "Any man who believes that a Muslim woman who fights for her dignity and right to citizenship excludes herself necessarily from the umma...is a man who misunderstands his own religious heritage, his own cultural identity" (Mernissi viii). She goes about supporting this claim by delving into the very detailed documentation of Islam history. She attributes misogyny in the past and present Muslim culture to the male elite. She gives many examples of how Muhammad and Islam have only supported equality of the sexes and also how the male elite used false hadiths and very narrow interpretations of the Koran and true hadiths for their purpose. She begins by describing how the male elite started…show more content…
At the same time "the caliph `Ali retook Basra after having defeated `A'isha at the Battle of the Camel" (Mernissi 50). This leads Mernissi to wonder if Abu Bakra made up the Hadith to give reason for not supporting `A'isha in the fitna. Mernissi also attacks the morals of Abu Bakra and finds out that he had been found to give false testimony in a case to the caliph `Umar. So with the improbable case of extraordinary memory and lying in other areas of his life, Mernissi gives reason to reject Abu Bakra as a reliable source of Hadith. Mernissi discounts another Hadith made by Abu Hurayra, "The Prophet said that the dog, the ass, and woman interrupt prayer if they pass in front of the believer, interposing themselves between him and quibla." (Mernissi 64) First, Mernissi finds that when `A'isha heard of this Hadith, she rebuked it by saying that she had seen the Prophet saying his prayers while she was lying on the bed between him and quibla (Mernissi 70). History also gives Abu Hurayra a very anti-feminine personality. He had a nickname given to him by the Prophet which he disliked because of the trace of femininity in it. This lead him to say "..the male is better than the female" (Mernissi 71). He is also an object of distrust because even al-Bukhari stated that "people said that Abu Hurayra recounts too many Hadith" (Mernissi 79). He even confessed and retracted his words
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