"Just Tell Them...

I have worked 40 years to make the Women's Suffrage platform broad enough for Atheists and Agnostics to stand upon, and now if need be I will fight the next 40 to keep it Catholic enough to permit the straightest Orthodox religionist to speak or pray and count her beads upon."

Susan B. Anthony

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Feminist Sticky Wickets: Women and Radical Islam

Recently found this excellent Feminist blog, by a well respected scholar who I am familiar with from my college days. It deals alot with Muslim-American issues. It's now linked in my blogroll, in case anyone else wants to track it from the Stray Dawg Blog.

Dr. Chesler is so well published that I cannot even begin to list her works here. Suffice to say that they are impressive. She is unabashedly pro-Israel, which may be a turn off to some. I, personally, do not see the fight against anti-semitism, to be all that different from the one against misogyny. Oppression is oppression. No form of it should ever be tolerated. So I am OK with Chesler's leanings. Plus, I appreciate *knowing* her "bias." (Most non-Feminist authors don't divulge biases. That is a fact.)

Women's issues in Radical Islam are truly one of the stickiest wickets in Feminism today.... and I give Chesler high marks for attempting to grapple with it! For my money... she is quite accurate in her assessment of the state of crisis that Feminist scholars find themselves in over the subject. I'll be ordering some of her newer books now, to read after I return my Spring Break journeys.

Speaking of books... I'd also like to recommend that everyone who is REALLY interested in this topic read "Three Cups of Tea" by Greg Mortensen. If you take the time to do that... you will find his insider's view of Pakistani and Afghani politics invaluable. Mr. Mortensen insists that the education of women/ girls is the ONLY solution to Radical Islam in those parts of the world. Warring in the areas is, not only unhelpful, it produces more enrollees in militant madrassas. So it's counterproductive. Note: The author is NOT a pacifist. He is a former soldier, in fact. But.... he tries to share *what works.* And his "argument" (if you want to call it that) is impressive.

I am spending quite a bit of time on this subject right now. And will be posting a few blogs on it soon... I hope. But, in the meantime, here is an excellent essay by Artemis March about Feminism's desperate need to break with some of the taboos related to "multicultural relativism."



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