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Women in Islam

Muslims make up a fifth of the world's population with more than a billion followers. Worldfocus explores how hundreds of millions of Islamic women are navigating changing norms of culture, society and law within the context of their faith. Our producers and correspondents report on this issue from Iran, Morocco, Egypt and Turkey.

In Iran, women have made remarkable strides in education in the last decades - 65 percent of college undergraduates are female and 70 percent of graduate students are enrolled in medicine. Yet legally, women cannot travel freely without the permission of a male relative and face formidable obstacles when divorcing their husbands. We explore the tensions between the expectations of many highly educated young Iranian women and the realities of their lives.

In Morocco, we profile an activist challenging the stigma facing unwed mothers, while in a conservative corner of Turkey, we meet young women defying gender stereotypes through their love of sports. And we explore why - contrary to popular perception in the West - more women in Egypt choose to wear the veil.

"Women in Islam" is a collection of signature videos, interviews, reporter observations and analysis from the field and blogger perspectives.

Women in Islam

Female soccer players shoot down Turkish taboos

Signature Video

Female soccer players shoot down Turkish taboos

In much of Turkey, playing soccer is something girls simply don't do. But despite religious and cultural resistance, some women players are challenging the norm and taking to the field.

Posted: September 10, 2009 12:49   Comments: 19
Moroccan single moms cope with hostility, shame

Video + Interview

Moroccan single moms cope with hostility, shame

Young Muslim women who become pregnant out of wedlock face intense pressures, and are often shunned, scorned and shamed.

Posted: September 9, 2009 14:19   Comments: 5
Misinterpretation of Qur’an holds back gender equality

In the Newsroom

Misinterpretation of Qur’an holds back gender equality

Egyptian-American reporter Hoda Osman reported from Morocco for Worldfocus. She writes about her own perceptions of equality and Islam, and varying interpretations of the Qur’an.

Posted: September 9, 2009 12:23   Comments: 2
Women hold the keys to Iran’s future

In the Newsroom

Women hold the keys to Iran’s future

Producer Richard O'Regan ventured to Iran for Worldfocus and describes his impressions of the changing role of women in Iranian society.

Posted: September 9, 2009 09:30   Comments: 4
Women in Iran race ahead, but still face gender block

Video + Interview

Women in Iran race ahead, but still face gender block

Correspondent Bigan Saliani and producer Richard O'Regan travel to Iran to explore the tensions between the expectations of many highly educated young Iranian women and the realities of their lives.

Posted: September 8, 2009 18:25   Comments: 5
Extended interview with Iran’s first female vice president

Extended Interview

Extended interview with Iran’s first female vice president

Masoumeh Ebtekar served as Iran's first female vice-president under the reformist government of Mohammad Khatami. She shares her thoughts on Islam, women and relations between the U.S. and Iran.

Posted: September 8, 2009 15:30   Comments: 3
WIDE ANGLE’s Time for School returns to Afghanistan

Video

WIDE ANGLE’s Time for School returns to Afghanistan

WIDE ANGLE’s award-winning 12-year documentary project, Time for School, returns in 2009 with visits to seven classrooms in seven countries to offer a glimpse into the lives of seven extraordinary children who are struggling to get what nearly all American kids take for granted: a basic education.

Posted: September 2, 2009 16:14   Comments: 1
Head-to-toe Islamic veil rare in France

Perspectives

Head-to-toe Islamic veil rare in France

A report by French newspaper Le Monde revealed that just 367 women wear the full Islamic veil in France. Worldfocus contributor Ben Piven explains the tension surrounding the French government's attempts to restrict Islamic dress.

Posted: September 1, 2009 10:30   Comments: 6
Kuwait elects women to parliament in political milestone

Blogwatch

Kuwait elects women to parliament in political milestone

There was a political milestone in Kuwait this weekend, where for the first time, women were elected to Kuwait's parliament. It was only four years ago that women won the right to vote in Kuwait.

Posted: May 18, 2009 12:28   Comments: 2
Women in Morocco blend tradition and fashion

From the Field

Women in Morocco blend tradition and fashion

Worldfocus producer Rebecca Haggerty is currently reporting from Morocco and explores the meaning behind the country's clothing -- from tight jeans to heavy headscarves -- in a blog and slideshow.

Posted: May 1, 2009 14:00   Comments: 7
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