Western observers looking at Islamic societies tend to perceive the presence of polygyny as indicative of the low status of women. Recognizing that such a view is, often, an outsider’s/etic perspective, it raises the question how women in polygynous marriages feel about it and their status as women from an insider’s/emic perspective. Research this issue to find out how Muslim women in polygynous marriages feel about this system. Do they think that it is inherently oppressive to women, or is that opinion a Western conceit (ethnocentric)? Are feminists in the Muslim world focusing on polygyny as a target for reform?
Be very cautious about the sources you use for this assignment. Do they actually interview women in these marriages? Critically evaluate them to understand potential biases and discuss this in your paper. Avoid sources that are actually reporting on cheating and bigamy. Of course, include your sources in a Works Cited and use in-text citations when quoting and paraphrasing. Your choice of sources will be a major factor in the grading of this paper. If you choose a questionable source, be sure to defend your choice.
Remember to look at this issue anthropologically, which may be contrary to personal beliefs.
Type your answers into a word processing file, they should be at least 2-3 full pages.
Relevant Course Objective: Describe examples of cultural universals.
Formatting instructions: All assignments need to follow MLA formatting. This includes the name and title block (See instructions for how to format your first page here (Links to an external site.)). Use MLA in-text citations (Links to an external site.) and Works Cited (Links to an external site.) (if needed). Other formatting instructions about spacing, margins, etc. are in the syllabus.
Requirements: 2-3 pages
Polygamy has been the focus of many feminist discussions over the years. Most feminists see polygyny as an insult to women and a tool used to enhance the oppression and suffering of women. However, polygamy, as evidenced in the Islamic culture and religion, is ingrained in the Quran, and this is the main argument used to legitimize it. Therefore, most feminists view polygamy as a legalized form of abuse that has blindfolded many Muslim women into accepting the suffering and oppression that comes with it. As Baker postulates, women in polygamous marriages are gagged by the interpretation of Islamic teachings, which mandates them to be subject to the man and may accommodate co-wives (4).