Islamic Gender Apartheid is Real and it’s Here

Daniel Greenfield writes in Frontpage:

In a political environment where feminism is both ubiquitous and meaningless, whether feminism means a t-shirt or unthinking adherence to leftist doctrine, Phyllis Chesler bears the scars of her activism from her time in Afghanistan to her activism in America. And so it’s unsurprising that Dr. Chesler also remains one of the rare few who are working to confront gender apartheid in Islam.

Gender politics in vritually every other religion is a fit topic for discussion in the Western political and academic sphere. But Islamic gender apartheid is praised and celebrated. Numerous pieces describe the hijab and even the burka as forms of feminist empowerment. The torrent of apologetics is driven by extremely well financed Islamist groups, but also by a left that is eager to view non-Westerners as victims and to exempt women in the Muslim world from equality or human rights.

The warped coverage of the recent Saudi decision on female drivers embodied everything wrong and dishonest about the misrepresentation of the role of women in Islam. But Dr. Chesler’s latest book, Islamic Gender Apartheid: Exposing A Veiled War Against Women provides a welcome response and relief from the routine “veiling” and feministwashing of the truth. It’s an in-depth survey of the conditions that women face in the Muslim world and the often controversial figures who fight to expose it. 

Islamic Gender Apartheid asks uncomfortable questions about the role of women in Islam. And often provides even more uncomfortable answers. And it never loses sight of its passion and focus on the human rights of the women that it advocates for. In a world where the Islamic oppression of women is given a pass while derivative narratives such as A Handmaid’s Tale, which envision the application of Islamic norms to Western women, are treated as feminist statements, Dr. Chesler’s essays are a powerful wake up call.