Part I -Progressive Muslims – In Search of Progressive Islam Beyond 9/11 Farid Esack describes the situation of progressive Muslims post 9/11. He does this because their role has become significantly important in the society they live in. Progressive Muslims described by him are liberal Muslims who are seeking for a change but according to their conservative values. He describes the attacks from 9/11 represents a collision of two forms of religious fundamentalism, the American capitalistic market that was attacked by the angry religious individuals.
These individuals portray an insult and a threat to Islam and to the people who follow it in a decisive correct manner. In the eyes of an American, Islam has become a threat to America and has been portrayed as a danger by the media. These negative influences have brought out negative effects and have brought more problems to the Islamic World and to the people and to countries that fear its potential to become a threat.
Esack points out that the capitalistic system that America has established has created greed and corruption that poses effects to individuals to prioritize what is important to them in terms of morals and values. This has become a threat to Islam due to modernization, secularism, and western capitalistic influences that pose a threat to the teachings of Islam and the way of life of individuals to stay sovereign to God. Esack also states that post decisions of 9/11 for America has done nothing more than cost many more innocent lives.
Part II – Progressive Muslims and Gender Justice – Transforming Feminisms: Islam, Women, and Gender Justice Sa’diyya Shaikh, a Muslim woman gives the readers her definition of “feminism. ” She clarifies that there is no single identity of feminism but a range of feminism identities in the Islamic world due to the integration of gender from different origins of the World and cultural backgrounds they have been exposed too. The religion and political situations as well play a role in feminism identities in Islam.
The Western media and people have shared their opinions about how Islamic women are treated in Muslim populated countries. The loudest opinion that can be constantly is that they are being oppressed and that women can’t choose what they want, wear, or have complete freedom and think Islam as a sexist religion. According to Shaikh, the term feminism has been represented or used by the white middle class women in the west and that their goal is to reach out to women in Muslim populated countries and to save them from the oppression of Islam.
However the women from Muslim populated countries do not recognize that they are oppressed and feel that they these western women should not falsify the way women live or want to live in Islamic populated countries. One of the most common misinterpretations in the West towards women in Islamic countries is that the hijab is an example of women being oppressed by Islam. This is one of the misinterpretations of the West. The hijab has been present since pre-Islamic time. A lot of women from other religions do cover themselves even to this day.
The hijab dominantly worn by Muslim woman as a personal choice but is recommended because it prevents raging desires from men and as women allow them to preserve their honor and moral values. According to the Shari’a some countries require women to wear the hijab and women choose to follow it because of their faith. Part III: Progressive Muslims and Pluralism – How to Put the Genie Back in the Bottle? “Identity” Islam and Muslim Youth Cultures in America Marcia Hermansen’s title symbolically represents the destructiveness and the loss of complete awareness with the power of a “genie. The author discusses how the Muslim youth is changing in the West and how their identity as Muslims is getting attacked. They have become confused about themselves as Western Muslims and the Muslim countries. The youth has been challenged by latest events that have put Islam on the spotlight. They have been subjected to a situation where America their own home becomes an enemy to their religion and that they have been put under a microscope as a potential threat. Some of the youth probably experience significant stereotypical notions due to their names or the appearance they have especially after 9/11.
The author mentions it is the parent’s responsibility to make sure that their youth are civilized according to Islam and how to deal with situations that put their youth and their identity in challenge. The author further mentions the potential threat that arises from the constant hatred posed on Muslims in America and vice versa. The youth have found themselves with their identity in attack and have been forced to political Islam so they can relate to it and feel they are part of something that unites themselves with other Muslims on a common struggle.