Horizonte 13 (39):1427-1449 (2015)

Starting from the Friday woman lead prayer held in 2005 in New York, I focus in this paper on the role Muslim contemporary women play in shaping Muslim societies and communities to assert their authoritative role “in the mosque”. I begin by setting the scene of the event and, after a brief discussion of its symbolic meaning, I address two main questions: first, how the debate which followed the event contributed and contributes to promote a change inside the Muslim world and outside it, letting emerge some leading figures in the struggle for justice and equity in contemporary Islam; and second which are the theological and legal basis for the role of woman as imāma. Although the issue of women leadership in prayer is far from finding a unanimous consent, the debate demonstrates that some issues can and must be discussed, and that a change is possible only when Muslim women question the male elite power
Keywords gender ğihād, Qur’ānic hermeneutics, women imāma, women leadership, leadership in the mosque
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DOI 10.5752/P.2175-5841.2015v13n39p1427
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