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Introduction, Workshop 14: Islam 2—Contemporary Issues

In "Building Bridges," a Tapestry of Faith program

Islam in its original state gave women privileges and imposed no harsh restrictions or double standards upon them. — Saimah Ashraf, Muslim author, in her essay "Shattering Illusions: Western Conceptions of Muslim Women"

Women are active fighting for their rights in all public spheres, including as workers, in many societies, but again the culture of religious patriarchy is so dominant that we are still not free individuals in our own right. — Houzan Mahmoud, Iraqi activist

This workshop continues to explore Islam, the world's second largest faith. This workshop may be more challenging for participants and facilitators. Participants discuss the complex topic of women in Islam, including contradictions between the Qur'an's apparent affirmation of equality between women and men and the disparate treatment of the genders in contemporary Islamic societies. Participants explore three contemporary issues: the status of women in Muslim societies; the Israeli/Palestinian conflict; and the division between the Sunni and Shiite Muslims.

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Last updated on Wednesday, November 9, 2011.

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