From Rights of Equality to Rights to Work – Let’s Discuss the Rights of Women in Islam


There is no doubt about the fact that the Quranic revelation was a true revolution in the way of life of the Bedouin Arabs of Arabia and especially in the new conception that the Qur’an had of the woman. This Arab woman who was living in the worst conditions, without any rights, has seen her life change in an incredible way with the arrival of the revelation of the Holy Quran. What came announcing the equality of men and women in life, honor, dignity and society in general, respecting the assets of both (men and women). God tells us in the Quran, that the goods of all people are sacred and therefore it is forbidden to dismiss or ignore them directly or indirectly, all these rights are common to men and women without any distinction.The prophet himself has suffered a lot to change the mentality of those tremendously hard Arabs with women, there are thousands of sayings of the prophet where his tenderness, kindness and love for them stand out. The Qur’an and the Sunna (Oral and Written Tradition of the Prophet Muhammad (sas), are sources from which every Muslim obtains all his rights and obligations.

Allah (S.W.T) says in the Quran:

2: 187 “They are a garment for you and you are a garment for them.”

If absolute equality between members of the same sex is impossible because of their natural differences in their strength and other qualities, it will definitely be impossible to match the opposite sexes. God, exalted, says in the Holy Qur’an:

51: (49) “And in everything we have created opposites, so that you may remember that only God is One.”

Even atoms have this duality, with interrelated and complementary roles of particles and negative and positive ions and yet each is an integral part of the whole binary system of life. Most living beings have their female and male to reproduce. As the biological sciences teach us, all mammals have similar features in their molecular and glandular structures that determine the gender difference. These basic physical, psychological and sexual traits have a determining effect on other aspects of life. It is natural for a man to need and find fulfillment with a woman and for a woman to feel the same for a man, because they have been created for each other and for each other.

49: (13) Oh people! Indeed, we have made you all male and female, and we have made you nations and tribes, so that you may recognize one another. Actually, the noblest of you before God is the one who is most deeply aware of Him. Certainly, God is omniscient, aware of everything.

We will mention some of the rights of women in Islam:

Economic Rights

Like the man, the woman is qualified and can perform any commercial or financial transaction. According to Islamic lawa woman may have, buy, sell or carry out any transaction without the consent of a guardian and without imposing any restriction or limitation. This is undoubtedly a concept that did not begin to be applied in most Western societies until the end of the 19th century.

Allah (S.W.T) says in the Holy Quran:

4:32: Do not covet what Allah (S.W.T) has given to some more than others. Men will get their share of what they earned, and women will get their share of what they earned. Ask Allah (S.W.T) to grant you His favor. Allah is knowledgeable of all things.

The greater economic responsibility granted to men requires that they provide women with not only maintenance but physical protection and kind and respectful treatment.

Allah (S.W.T) says in the holy Quran:

4: (34) MEN are responsible for the care of women by virtue of what Allah (S.W.T) has given to them in greater abundance than to them, and of what they spend of their goods

On the contrary, the woman does not have any financial responsibility, except the small one corresponding to her personal expenses, the luxurious things she wants to have. It enjoys economic security and is maintained. If it is a wife, the husband provides it; if it is a mother, the son; if she is a daughter, the father and, if she is a sister, the brother.

The woman in Islam is not obliged at any time to share her property with her husband, those goods (dowry, salary, property, family inheritance, etc.) to be their exclusive property can spend and invest as she wants, thus having her own bank account, she has the power and skills to do so. If one day the marriage fails those assets give you the opportunity to be financially independent, in this way you could achieve your maximum independence after the divorce.

Women in Islam have the right to receive their inheritance, a right that was unthinkable in many societies. This topic is extensively discussed and explained in detail in the article: ” The inheritance of women in Islam.

Allah (S.W.T) says in the Holy Quran:

4: (7) A part of what parents and relatives leave belongs to men, and to women belongs part of what parents and relatives leave, be it little or much – it is a part prescribed by Allah (S.W.T).

Social rights

Islam gives women the same rights as men in education.

The Prophet Muhammad (sas) said: 

“To seek knowledge is an obligation of every Muslim (whether male or female) Transmitted by Ibn Majah and al-Baihaqi.

The Prophet also said: 

” Whoever takes care of three daughters women and educates them well, marries them and treats them with good manners will have their reward in Paradise…” [Transmitted byAhmad and Ibn Habban ] 

The Prophet Muhammad declared more than 14 centuries ago that there is no distinction between man and woman when it comes to seeking wisdom.

This includes knowledge of the Qur’an and Hadiths as well as other knowledge. Men and women have the ability to learn and understand. Since it is also their obligation to promote good behavior, and condemn the bad of this in the spheres of life. Muslim women must acquire the appropriate education to perform this task according to their own talents and natural interests.

– The Muslim woman as wife has the right to keep her own surname without having to adopt him as the husband in Western society. In Islam they are not only husband and wife, but they are also partners, so the preservation of the woman’s surname allows a certain independence of both women and men.

-With regard to the woman as a mother, Islam has awarded her the Gold, Silver and Bronze medals, keeping the Man with a small symbolic detail.

One day, a man came to ask the Prophet Muhammad (sas): 

“Who has more right to be treated with the best courtesy and the best respect?, and the prophet said:” Your mother “, the man asked:” And who then? “,” Your mother, “the prophet answered again, and again the man asked,” And who’s next? “” Your mother. “The man asked for the fourth time,” And who next? “, “Now your father,” said the prophet. [ Bukhari and Muslim ]

Suffice it to recall the famous saying of the Prophet Muhammad (sas): “Paradise is at the feet of mothers”.

Political rights

A right granted to Muslim women by their Creator more than 1431 years ago is the right to vote. In any public matter, a woman can make her opinion heard and participate in politics. An example of this is found in the Holy Quran:

60: (12) ” O Prophet, when the believers come to swear allegiance to you, [pledging to] that [henceforth] they will not attribute divinity to anything except Allah (S.W.T)”

So, once their belief is ” proven ” as far as possible, the Prophet (sas) – or, in later times, the head of the Islamic state or community of Muslims – can accept his oath of allegiance (baiaa), with the one that concludes, so to speak, his ” examination “.

There are many examples of women who have participated in politics, it is found in the Holy Quran itself. ” Bilqlis”, better known as ” the Queen of Sheba “, stands out for its great ability and cunning. Similarly, other women followed his example, as happened with ” Shajar Ad-Durr “, who took the command of Egypt on the death of her husband, directing resistance to Louis IX. No less spectacular was the work carried out by “Arwa Bint Ahmad “, which led Yemen and changed the country’s dedication of arms to agriculture.

Right to Divorce

In the Holy Quran, both men and women can apply and obtain a divorce. In the event that the husband divorces the woman (Talaq), the Qur’an makes it very clear that she should keep the house, except in case she has committed adultery. If the woman rejects her right to preserve the conjugal home, the man must give her provision and dismiss her honorably.

Allah (S.W.T) says in the Qur’an in this regard:

33:49 “… provide [them] with what is necessary, and let them go with delicacy.”

In the case of the woman who divorces the man (jul ‘), if there is no important reason, it will be she who must return the gift received with the marriage contract (badly called ” dowry “, which is just the opposite). By the way, the usual translation of the Arabic word ” Talâq “ (divorce) for ” repudiation “ is a fallacy.“Talâq” comes from the verb ” let go, let go “.

Right to Work

Women in Islam like men also have the right to work, although unlike him, she is not obliged to do it.The money that the woman obtains from that work is for her, since the husband is responsible for the maintenance of the family, that is to say that the Muslim woman is not obliged at any time to share her property with her husband, those goods (the dowry, salary, property, family inheritance, etc.) are your exclusive property you can spend and invest in what she believes necessary and / or relevant, thereby having your own bank account.

Allah (S.W.T) says in the Holy Quran:

4:32 ” Men will get their share of what they earned, and women will get their share of what they earned. “

The women actively participated in the organization of Islam, in the oaths of allegiance to the Prophet in their defense, and emigrated from Mecca to the Medina on an equal footing. They participated and gave their opinions in the assemblies (shûrà) and directed oppositions against the majorities. Muslim women worked in irrigation, in agriculture in general, in cottage industries, in the direction of work, in health, cleaning and domestic chores, which allowed them to live a dignified life for them and their families.

Precisely because the right of women to work and property was recognized, Islam imposed on it the tax of Zakat (helping the needy), just as it weighs on every male. And Zakat (helping the needy) is nothing more than collaborating in the construction of Islam, so the effort of women is just as meritorious as that of men. With her contribution, the woman stood out as a participant in everything.


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Rava Desk

Rava is an online news portal providing recent news, editorials, opinions and advice on day to day happenings in Pakistan.


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