An Introduction to The Social Movements of Iranian Muslim Women
CERES Palais, room "Ruhrpott" (4.13)
Guest lecture by Forough Parsa, Institute for Humanities & Cultural Studies, Tehran
Islam and the Quran created a significant change in the status of women 15 centuries ago by providing cultural, social, political, and economic rights for women. However, throughout history, women have not fully benefited from these rights. The emergence of feminist movements in the West had a significant effect on the Islamic world, leading women in various Islamic countries such as Egypt, Iran, and Turkey to organize and fight for equal rights and an end to gender discrimination. In Iran, women played an active role in the constitutional struggle, with various women's associations and communities formed to defend the constitutional revolution and achieve equality and the elimination of oppression of women.
However, the constitution approved in 1285 ignored many women's rights, including the right to vote. During the first and second Pahlavi eras, women's organizations continued to advocate for legal demands. During the Islamic Revolution and the establishment of the Islamic Republic, women had a significant presence and influential role, with increased social and political participation compared to previous decades. Women have made significant strides in various fields, including education, research, arts, economics, and society. However, after four decades, many social and political demands of women remain unmet.
The social movements of Iranian Muslim women are influenced by the idea of re-reading religious teachings and transforming religious ideas to meet modern requirements. Theorists of this movement believe that none of the Quranic verses ignore women's civil and social rights. Today, numerous associations and communities in Iran continue to fight for equal social, economic, and political rights for women, with the hope of achieving their goals in the near future.