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Sex and Islam

Reader comment on item: Female Desire and Islamic Trauma

Submitted by John Brownfield (United States), May 27, 2004 at 09:20

What a fascinating article. I've long been of the opinion that the Muslim world's inability to reach parity with the West in the last couple of centuries, despite repeated outward attempts to ape our ways, was their refusal to accept the kind of political and economic freedom that would truly enable the Muslim world to raise itself up. I always assumed their reluctance was at root an issue of domestic power relationships.

A typical Muslim man may live in a tyrannical dictatorship, but in his own home he is truly king. A Muslim man does not for a second have to put up with the kinds of day to day domestic restrictions that we Western men take for granted. If he wants to stay out all night with the boys, his wife wouldn't think of complaining. Your average Ahmed may grant that political freedom would be a nice thing, but really the average dictator doesn't loom too large in your daily life if you keep your nose clean. And he can't help but notice that Western political freedom eventually brings with it the empowerment of women, which would upset the traditional domestic power relationship. Why trade absolute power over your domestic life, where it really counts, for the right to vote for a political leader every few years?

Never did I consider that female sexuality per se entered into their calculations.
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