The Islamic concepts of masculinity and femininity

Siraj, Asifa (2006) The Islamic concepts of masculinity and femininity. PhD thesis, University of Glasgow.

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Abstract

This thesis explores the subject of masculinity and femininity through interviews with 68 heterosexual Muslims (33 male and 35 females) in Glasgow and 7 homosexual Muslim males in London. The purpose of this study is to explore heterosexual masculinity and femininity from a Muslim perspective. While there has been much research on Muslim women, there has been very little work on Muslim men. In this thesis, I approach the subject of masculinity and femininity from a sociological and religious perspective. That is, my research examines 'Western' sociological theories of masculinity and femininity, and the interpretations of the Qur'an and hadith texts provided by traditional and modern Muslim scholars and compare them with what my participants have to say about their own constructions of femininity and masculinity. The principle objective of my research is to focus on the role that religion plays in shaping gender and sexuality. While sociological theorists see gender as something that is socially constructed and performed, traditional Muslim scholars portray gender as 'natural' and given by Allah, With my participants we see both constructivist and essentialist views being expressed. I look at how these views influence the daily lives, roles and behaviours of my Muslim participants. Research on homosexual Muslim masculinity has to date been nonexistent. With interviews with 7 male homosexual men I examine how homosexual Muslims 'accommodate' themselves within Islam's heteronormative social structures. I look at how they reconcile their faith with their sexuality and whether this represents a challenge to Islamic heteronormativity. I explore the implications this 'accommodation' has on homosexual's men's understanding of gender roles and relations, and in particular, how they grapple with the issue of masculinity and sexuality in Islam.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Qualification Level: Doctoral
Additional Information: Adviser: L Nicole Bourque
Keywords: Islamic studies, Gender studies
Date of Award: 2006
Depositing User: Enlighten Team
Unique ID: glathesis:2006-71920
Copyright: Copyright of this thesis is held by the author.
Date Deposited: 17 May 2019 09:31
Last Modified: 17 May 2019 09:31
URI: http://theses.gla.ac.uk/id/eprint/71920

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