Thursday, August 16, 2012

Does Islam establish gender roles for women? Part 3


Salamu `Alaykum. I am an Egyptian girl. I love journalism very much. It is my major in the AUC. Could you please enlighten me on whether women are allowed to work as journalists or not? Can women also work as TV announcers?


Wa`alaykum As-Salaamu Warahmatullahi Wabarakatuh.

In The Name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.

All praise and thanks are due to Allah, and peace and blessings be upon His Messenger.
Dear sister in Islam, thank you very much for having confidence in us, and we hope our efforts, which are pure for Allah’s Sake, meet your expectations.

In Islam, women are the counterparts of men. Every Islamic injunction addressed to man is also addressed to woman. The Islamic law is gender neutral. Both men and women are permitted to work and seek Allah’s Provision. Allah Almighty says: “And their Lord hath heard them (and He saith): Lo! I suffer not the work of any worker, male or female, to be lost…” (Aal-`Imran: 195)

In her response to the question, Dr. Su`aad Ibrahim Salih, head of the department of Islamic Jurisprudence at the Girl’s College, Al-Azhar University, states the following:

“Basically, men and women are permitted to work. However, the prime obligation here is on men, as they are the breadwinners of the family.

Women, on the other hand, are permitted to work in public, if there is a necessity that warrants it. But in the context of her work, the Muslim woman has to keep away from what may jeopardize her religion and honor.

As regards working in Journalism, there is a possibility that a woman will find herself entangled in mixed social gatherings with different media-related sources and personnel, especially when she works as a correspondent, that’s why I think that it is better for a Muslim woman to avoid working in that field. This view is based on what is known in Islamic Jurisprudence as ‘blocking the means’ or Sad Adh-Dhara` (i.e. blocking the means leading to evil).

But in working as TV announcer, I say that there is nothing wrong in that as long as the announcer sticks to the Islamic dress code, avoids any form of illicit privacy or Khalwah, softening her voice beyond the normal, and avoiding wearing perfumes. This is based on the following Qur’anic verse: “O ye wives of the Prophet! Ye are not like any other women. If ye keep your duty (to Allah), then be not soft of speech, lest he in whose heart is a disease aspire (to you), but utter customary speech.” (Al-Ahzab: 32)

No comments:

Post a Comment