Muslim Women and War on Terror

TitleMuslim Women and War on Terror
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2008
AuthorsYaqoob, Salma
JournalFeminist Review
Start Page150
Date Published04/2008

The 20th century saw the rise of women. The past thirty years have seen a change in the status and role of women which has resulted in increased attention being given to the economic importance of women. Diversity and gender discussions have resulted with ethnicity, sexual orientation, cultural diversity and religious beliefs forming the base for this complex debate. Awareness of female talent is not only lost to the corporate world but to family businesses too. Women in leadership roles in family businesses are still not the norm. There is a need to further understand the role of females in family businesses as past studies have indicated the varying type of roles that women in family businesses tend to adopt, but do not explain the implications of these role adoptions. Although recognised as very important players, the role of women is often defined as invisible in decision-making, supportive in men’s traditional business domains and often rarely adequately recognised and rewarded. The economic role of Muslim women in society has been a subject of intense debate among Islamic and none-Islamic scholars alike. The Arab world has one of the lowest participation levels of working women (33% compared to the global average of 56%), yet globally, Muslim women actively participate in various private and public sectors of the economy as well as in family businesses however their participation and role in family businesses has not been thoroughly researched. The participation and roles of women in Muslim family businesses introduces the influence of Islam on women and their roles in these businesses. This study used qualitative research to determine Muslim women’s participation in family businesses. Participants working in family businesses from the local Port Elizabeth Muslim business community were approached. The research was conducted by a Muslim woman who created a level of trust as this is a closed community. The findings highlight the influence of Islamic values and practises on the participation and roles of Muslim women in family businesses. Key words: Family business, Muslim women, Empowerment of Muslim women.

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