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in category Family, Gender and Sexuality

Why were there so few female Muslim scholars historically?

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And why does this still remain to be the case?
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This is a misconception concerning Islamic history. According to Muslim historians, virtually all the leading scholarly figures in Islamic history had women among their many teachers. Detailed biographies document thousands of female Muslim scholars throughout Islamic history, many of whom were teachers of renown male scholars.  For example, Rabi'ah Bint Mu'awwad, a great scholar of fiqh, who taught scholars of Madina; A'isha bint Sa'd bint ibn Abi Waqqas, whose pupils included Imam Malik; and the granddaughter of Hasan, Sayyida Nafisa, whose pupils included Imam Shafi'i.  The contemporary scholar Mohammed Akram Nadwi in his book "Al-Muhadithat: The women scholars in Islam" looks at learned women enjoyed high public standing and authority in the formative years of Islam just within the science of hadith. He explains how for many centuries women travelled intensively for religious knowledge and as a matter of course attended some of the most prestigious mosques and madrasas across the Islamic world. He considers typical documents used in Islamic scholarship including class registers and ijazahs from women authorizing men to teach along with testimonies about female teachers from some of the most revered ulema to support his case.

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