Islamic Feminism: transnational and national reflections
Al-Sharmani, Mulki Mohamed (2014)
Al-Sharmani, Mulki Mohamed
The Donner Institute, Åbo Akademi
Mulki Al-Sharmani trained as an anthropologist. She received her doctorate degree from the Johns Hopkins University, USA in 2005. She is an Academy of Finland research fellow (2013–18) at the Faculty of Theology, Study of Religions Unit, University of Helsinki. Mulki researches, teaches, and writes about Muslim family law, the Islamic interpretive tradition and the question of gender, migration and religion, Muslim marriage norms and practices in migration, transnational migrant families. A list of her publications can be found at
This article focuses on contemporary interpretive knowledge projects that engage critically with Islamic religious sciences, and which are driven by the question of gender justice. These projects, which have been loosely termed as Islamic Feminism, are undertaken by Muslim women scholars from different countries who are committed to their religious faith and who are working towards the production of alternative, gender-sensitive religious knowledge. The paper has three aims: 1) to review the contestations about the definition, categorization, goals, and significance of what has been termed Islamic feminism, 2) to provide an alternative description of these knowledge projects and identify some hermeneutical characteristics that link them and which perhaps could be the basis for delineating them as a new field of knowledge, 3) to map out the trajectory of building new religion-based feminist knowledge in Egypt, shedding light on light on current knowledge projects that can be labelled as Islamic feminism.