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Classes of Ladies of Cloistered SpacesWriting Feminist History through Biography in Fin-de-siecle Eypt$
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Marilyn Booth

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780748694860

Published to Edinburgh Scholarship Online: May 2018

DOI: 10.3366/edinburgh/9780748694860.001.0001

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Founding Mothers, Speaking Sisters: Lineaments of Community in History

Founding Mothers, Speaking Sisters: Lineaments of Community in History

(p.95) III Founding Mothers, Speaking Sisters: Lineaments of Community in History
Classes of Ladies of Cloistered Spaces

Marilyn Booth

Edinburgh University Press

This chapter focuses on Fawwaz’s portraits of early Muslim women, especially those of ahl al-bayt, the Prophet Muhammad’s family and lineage. It highlights her presentations of Alid and early Shi’i women given Fawwaz’s origins in the Shi‘i region of Jabal ‘Amil, Lebanon. Discussing women’s roles in the rift which led later to the development of sects in Islam, it finds that the biographical dictionary features an unusually high proportion of pro-‘Ali (Alid) and then Shi ‘i women, and that in their orientation these biographies signal a quiet but discernible Shi‘i perspective or allegiance. It then discusses Fawwaz’s emphases in her biographies of Muslim contemporaries: scholarship, literature, and reform, and how her life histories of Arab or Muslim contemporaries parallel those of Europeans.

Keywords:   Shi‘ism, shi‘a, Jabal ‘Amil, Mothers of the Believers, Ummahat al-mu’minin, Khadija bt. Khuwaylid, ‘A’isha bt. Abi Bakr, ‘Ali b. Abi Talib, Alids, Zaynab bt. ‘Ali, Husayn b. ‘Ali, ‘A’isha Taymur, Fatma Aliye

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