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Is religion compatible with feminism?
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The lack of religious freedom can be damaging to women's rights

Lack of religious freedom for women in particular exposes them to abuse, with extremist values oppressing women. The freedom to practice religion correlates with better economic and political rights.
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The Argument

Religious freedom is associated with gender equality. When religious freedom is not upheld it is the women in minority groups that suffer the most. For example, when ISIS kills Yazidi men and boys and forces women to convert or be sold to slavery, it promotes gender-based violence under the name of religious ideology. The freedom to practice religion results in more stable economies, where women's rights are upheld, and they are able to bring a voice to the table. Where a woman is not enabled to practice religion freely, she is restricted in her ability to contribute economically and politically, which can lead to governments restricting women's autonomy. For example, in Sudan, the case of Amira Osman Hamid, where Amira was charged for violating a Sudanese law on public morals, punishable by forty lashes, a fine, or both, for refusing to wear a hijab. Such instances of governmental restrictions on women, and religious community restrictions have been on the increase over the past decade. [1]

Counter arguments

Even if women have the liberty to choose their religion, they can still be confined to the rules within the religion, or the religious and cultural practices of that state. Simply enabling women to have the freedom to practice is insufficient. Where religions have practices that put women on an unequal platform, challenges need to be made. There are subtle and extreme forms in each mainstream religion. For example, honor killings, female genital mutilation, pro-life and the refusal to allow abortion to everyday society of gender norms of the woman being the home-maker or putting her career before her familial relationships. These norms maintained under the guise of religion need to be challenged to ensure that gender equality and freedom of religion are compatible. [2]



Rejecting the premises


This page was last edited on Thursday, 19 Nov 2020 at 00:37 UTC

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