The Wife-Beater Essay

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It is quite unwarranted to collapse these two given reasons into one and claim that the verse is merely giving men the duty of supporting women’s welfare.Like the scholars of ancient times, and like Prophet Muhammad himself (as will be seen), many Muslims feel uncomfortable with verse of the Quran.It is difficult to find a balanced and holistic interpretation that does not either defend wife-beating or that does not nullify the verse completely.Such a narrative, if it were true, would certainly be strong support for the feminist cause.But Ibn ʿAbbās and Muqātil’s aforementioned interpretations are strong historical evidence against her thesis; the notion of was thought to be about authority from the time of the Companions.Let’s now take a look at verse : Men are the protectors and maintainers of women, as God has given some of them an advantage over others, and because they spend out of their wealth.The good women are obedient, guarding what God would have them guard.This essay attempts to provide such an answer; taking the traditional meaning of the verse seriously while explaining how it fits within a modern society in which violence against women is rare and taboo (as it should be).To begin addressing the issue, the first principle we can state on this matter is this: Contemporary Islamic scholars who wish to defend , such as Yusuf al-Qaradawi, often mention that there are various restrictions in Islamic law on the way a man can strike a woman, as if this somehow justifies it. What needs to be answered is why the Quran allows any form of striking at all.There are many hadith narrations that mention women as deficient in intellect and morality.I make no references whatsoever to those narrations in this discussion; the “preference” I refer to is the plain meaning of the Quranic verse; it is a rank granted by God, the way an army grants different ranks to different soldiers without suggesting that the lower ranks are morally inferior to the upper ranks.


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