Leadership by women is by no means a new concept in the Islamic world. In fact, Islamic history is replete with female Muslim leaders. Researcher Badawi (1995) has extrapolated that the obstacles in the path of Muslim female leadership are “cultural practices”, not Islam. Even though it may be hard to do so in an Islamic way, there is actually no proof in the Quran that prohibits Muslim women from assuming leadership roles. Remnant androcentrism continues to be an impediment in the way of Muslim female leadership. Abugideriri has explained that traditionally, Islamic leadership has been gendered, with the males leading communities and the female leadership being relegated to the private sphere or female-oriented issues. Yet, such a dichotomy is not necessarily endorsed by the Quran.
Women constitute a significant portion of the population and must participate in politics with their male counterparts at a leveled playing field globally. Dr. Fatima Mernissi, a renowned Moroccan Muslim scholar, said that traditionally segregated private-public, female-male activities are incongruities in a developing society. When women enter the economy it becomes visible that their economic and political participation is essential to further government's goal.
This is a pioneer study which can provide a better understanding of American Muslims' attitudes towards Muslim women in society. It is based on quantitative methodology. This research also spoke to the question of whether or not are there distinctive demographic characteristics that influence the perception of Muslim female leadership and employed Ms. Bhutto, a Muslim female leader, as an example of a Muslim female leader. The findings of this study support a gendered attitude within the population with respect to attitude toward Muslim women and variations among demographic characteristics that influence the perception of Ms. Bhutto's leadership style.
|Commitee:||Madjidi, Farzin, Saunders, Ralph|
|School Location:||United States -- California|
|Source:||DAI-A 72/09, Dissertation Abstracts International|
|Subjects:||Biographies, Educational leadership, Womens studies, Islamic Studies, Political science|
|Keywords:||Attitudes, Bhutto, Benazir, Female, Leadership, Muslim, Pakistan, Transformational, Women leaders|
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