Many people would be surprised to know that women assumed combat roles during the time of the Prophet Muhammad and are even credited with saving Muhammad's life. Less surprising is the fact that, today, women in the Middle East make up only 28 percent of the labor force, considerably lower than other regions. Yet, a new and fascinating picture of these women is emerging.
This concise, content-rich volume provides an overview of women's roles in the Middle East and North Africa from the advent of Islam to the present.
Recent research shows that women in the Middle East and North Africa have played much larger roles in society than previously acknowledged. Women's Roles in the Middle East and North Africa explores these roles from both historical and contemporary perspectives, describing and analyzing the lives of women in the regions from the advent of Islam through contemporary times.
The book begins with an introduction that examines the pre-Islamic Middle East and North Africa. The balance of the chapters are organized thematically and provide detailed country studies for 19 nations. Chapters discuss work, law, religion, family, politics, and culture, exploring the changes women have undergone over a period of roughly 1,500 years.
• A chronology of women's roles in the Middle East and North Africa encompassing work, religion, family, law, politics, and culture from pre-Islamic to contemporary times
• Photographs illustrating various aspects of women's lives in the region
• A selected bibliography including contemporary articles on new topics in women's research
• A brief glossary of key terms such as abaya, sharia, and mahr
• Brings together in one convenient volume an enormous amount of material on many aspects of women's lives throughout the Middle East and North Africa
• Assesses various aspects of women's lives, including their role in law, family, politics, religion, culture, and work
• Incorporates interesting insight into historical individuals to illuminate the topics relative to women in 19 Middle Eastern and North African countries