Dr. Melanie Trexler
Arts and Sciences
When the Taliban rose to power in Afghanistan in the 1990s, an Islamic fundamentalist approach was utilized to disempower the Afghani people. The group particularly targeted women and girls, who were stripped of their rights, including their right to an education. While the Taliban is no longer in power, the issue of women’s education in Afghanistan has not received adequate attention, as threats and violence continue to keep women and girls out of school. This paper seeks to address the issue of women’s education in Afghanistan in the post-Taliban period with a focus on alternative models of education, including the Muslim feminist model and the Islamic secular feminist model. Specifically, this paper utilizes Islamic sources, including the Qur’an and hadith reports, and interviews conducted by Lina Abirafeh in Gender and International Aid in Afghanistan and by Rosemarie Skaine in The Women of Afghanistan under the Taliban to reveal a misunderstanding regarding Islam and the rights of women, especially the right of women to an education. I argue that based on the current realities in Afghanistan, the Muslim feminist model is the ideal model for re-structuring the educational system in post-Taliban Afghanistan because it empowers Afghan women to live devoutly as Muslims, while also empowering them to fully participate in society.
Lueder, Emily P., "Approaching Women's Education: Utilizing Islamic Sources for Empowerment" (2016). Symposium on Undergraduate Research and Creative Expression (SOURCE). 534.