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VIOLATIONS OF THE GENDER EQUALITY PRINCIPLES REVEALED IN CARMEN BIN LADINS INSIDE THE KIGDOM Rinawati Diponegoro University Semarang, Indonesia This paper analyzed the theme of violations of the gender equality principles in armen!s "in #adin!s Inside the $ingdom% The &est seller novel was &ased on the true story of the author!s life in Saudi 'ra&ia under the gender prohi&itions of Wahhabi custom% The analytical perspective adopted in this study is shaped &y the idea of Islamic feminism% The analysis resulted in the finding that gender pro&lem revealed in the novel was due to the violations of the gender equality principles% The violations of the gender equality principles included the practice of honor (illing, women!s face covering, the construction of women!s inferiority, the prohi&ition of entering mosque for women, segregation of se)es, divorced women!s getting no child custody rights, no o&ligation of educating women, forced marriage, temporary marriage, female genital mutilation and improper polygamy practice% In conclusion, the women depicted in the novel are not truly treated according to the gender equality principles% Key words* gender equality principles, Islamic feminism, Inside the $ingdom I. INTRODUCTION Today more women are involved in the discussion and reformation of identity than any other time in the human history% Therefore, people might thin( of feminism as a recent phenomenon% +owever, ,einer -1../0 argues that feminism has a very long history and every era has had its women movement% 1oreover 2adl -1..10 asserted that gender and gender related issues have attended the conception of the earliest human society% ,hile gender and gender related issue should &e viewed as far from new, what is modern, as 2adl points out, is the emergence of the gender de&ate and the interest of academia in 3gender studies4% 2urther he suggests that learning a&out 1uslim society and a&out gender relation in particular is part of the modern encounter of the west with Islam% The issue of women in Islam is highly controversial% It is commonly assumed that women are particularly oppressed in 1uslim societies and the oppression has something to do with Islam -2adl, 1..10% +owever, Raga& quoted in ,aha& -1..50 warns that this is not due to Islamic ideology &ut misapplication of the ideology in the societies% She also argues that much of the practices and laws of 1uslim countries have, to some degree, &ased on the cultural and traditional customs% 2urther, ,aha& -1..50 says that Islam claims to value gender equality and equity &ecause The 6uran and Sunna clearly reveal women!s role and responsi&ilities as well as their rights and opportunities%

7 ,arhol and +erndl quoted in 8reen and #e&ihan -1..90, argue that gender leaves its traces in literary te)ts including novel% In this study, the novel entitled Inside the Kingdom &y armen "in #adin is the topic under discussion% Inside the Kingdom, The International "est Seller :ovel in 7;;/ is &ased on the true story of the author% In the story, the gender issues are highlighted% It tells us a&out how the women live in Saudi 'ra&ia% The o&<ective of this study was to descri&e the violation of the gender equality principles revealed in Inside the Kingdom% Since this study is constructed within the Islamic perspective which has not &een adequately e)plored, it would give the readers some new viewpoints on the topic under discussion which might &e different from the mainstream% 2adl -1..10 states that to truly understand the gender in 1uslim societies, 1uslim cultures and tradition against Islamic standards need to &e referred, instead of the standard assumptions and theoretical practices which have &een esta&lished in other traditions, especially in the ,est% '&ou "a(r -1...0 emphasizes on the need to use The 6ur=an and the authenticated Sunna as referential framewor( in loo(ing at the gender in 1uslim Societies% She ma(es us aware that the concepts and notions of gender in the societies have developed historically as a result of a very complicated process of acculturation or, sometimes, as a result of pre>Islamic ideas that considera&ly influenced religious thought% II. METHOD OF INVESTIGATION Several issues related to the method are presented as follow* 3.1 Object ! t"e St#$% The o&<ect of the study is the te)t of the international &est seller novel entitled Inside the Kingdom &y Saudi 'ra&ia% 3.& D't' ! t"e St#$% The data availa&le in this novel te)t is in form dialogue, phrases, sentences and the e)plicit or implicit utterances found in the novel% 3.3 P( ce$#(e ! C ))ect*+, t"e D't' The procedure of collecting the data includes reading, identifying, classifying and inventorying% They are ela&orated as follows% 3.- P( ce$#(e ! D't' A+')%.*. armen "in #aden% This 7;9>page novel was pu&lished in 7;;/ &y ,arner "oo(% The novel is divided into 1. chapters% The novel tells us a&out the author!s life in

? The data are analyzed to gain the o&<ective of the study% Since it is qualitative study, the data are analyzed using several techniques% The topic under discussion is attri&uted to the gender issue in 1uslim society setting, therefore the analytical perspective adopted for this study principally shaped &y the ideas within Islamic feminism There are also several techniques used in analyzing the data to solve the pro&lem s% 2irstly, the data are e)posed to reveal the conte)t% Secondly, in order to find the violations of the gender equality principles, the data were compared to the gender equality principles% Since the principles are derived from the Islamic standards, it is necessary to refer to the verses of The 6ur!an and the Sunna. 'fter comparing, the ne)t step is ma(ing conclusion% The description and e)planations of the data are presented in the analysis% "ased on analysis, some conclusions can &e drawn in order to answer the statement of the pro&lem% III. RESULT The gender pro&lem was caused &y the a&sence of equal condition &etween men and women in the setting or in other words there are violations of the gender equality principles% The violations revealed in the novel are descri&ed in the following analysis% -.3.1 H + ( /*))*+, The datum &elow reveals how women who are considered to &ring dishonor to their families are forced to pay a terri&le price at the hand of the family mem&ers% The Datum is given as follows* :onetheless, 1ish!al had &een caught% I don!t (now how% 'nd her 8randfather, @rince 1ohamed, the &rother of the (ing $haled, had ordered her (illed, for &ringing shame on her family% $ing $haled apparently resisted his &rother!s order, &ut prince 1ohamed had insisted that she &e (illed, and he was the patriarch of his clan% There was no trial, I was told% 1ish!al was shot si) times in a par(ing lot downtown -Datum num&er 11;0% In the a&ove datum, the author recounts the tragic story of a girl named 1is!al% 1is!al was one of the $ing!s great nieces% 'lthough she was still young, her family had arranged to marry her off to a much older man% She had tried to flee the country with her lover% Unfortunately she had &een captured in the airport and then (illed% The idea &ehind the practice is closely related to the root of the culture of the setting% The author puts the matter in the novel as the following datum illustrates* In "edouin culture, clan loyalty is all you can count on% 's nomads, "edouins travel lightA the family is the anchor of the tri&e% ,omen and camels are "edouin!s tri&e!s

/ only possession% Ruthless is a positive value in the desert% 'nd honor, for reason I cannot even &egin to fathom, does not come from compassion, or good wor(sBit is focused on the a&solute possession of women% ,omen are not free to have emotion, such as love and longing% ' diso&edient woman dishonors her clan and is eliminated -Datum num&er 11?0% ,e can see that 3honor (illings4 reflects the men domination toward women who are regarded as nothing more than possession, &oth physically and sym&olically% -.3.& T"e Re0#*(e1e+t t C 2e( A)1 .t A)) ! t"e 3 1e+. B $% 43 1e+. F'ce C 2e(*+,5 ,omen in Saudi 'ra&ia are required to dress in what so>called Abaya% 2rom the following datum, we may assume that the Abaya is a (ind of dress for women that almost completely cover the whole &ody including the face% The datum reads* 3This time, as we circled the airport, I had a proper thin sil( Saudi Abaya to put over my head, my eyes, my hands, and every inch of my &ody -Datum num&er 9C04% To analyze the data related to the modesty, the Brochure Series pu&lished &y The Institute of Islamic Information and Education -%%%0 provides us with the information on the matter% It reads that Islam has no fi)ed standard as to the style of dress or type of clothing that 1uslim must wear% +owever, some requirements must &e met% The first of these requirements deals with part of the &ody which must &e properly covered% 's quoted in the &rochure, the following is the Sunna related to the requirements* 'yesha -R0 reported that 'smaa the daughter of '&u "a(r -R0 came to messenger of 'llah -p&uh0 while wearing a thin clothing% +e approached her and said* DE 'samaaF ,hen a girl reaches menstrual age, it is not proper that anything should remain e)posed e)cept this and this% +e pointed to the face and hands -'&u Dawood0% -.3.3 T"e C +.t(#ct* + ! 3 1e+. I+!e(* ( St't#. 2rom the following datum, we learn that women in the setting are su&<ected to the inferior status% The datum reads* The certainty of women!s inferior status and su&servience is &red into their &ones as they grew% In the car, +aifa!s older son Gwho was only ten or twelve> would instruct her sharply to veil if saw men coming% #ittle girl (new they must wal(, dress, and tal( uno&trusively% They had to &e su&missive, docile, and o&edient* it was common to see a young &oy wal( into a room and motion his older sister off her chair -Datum num&er 17/0%

C Through the datum a&ove, it was depicted that the society values women as inferior gender and women are not worth respects% The e)treme attitude showing such value is visi&le when the author as the employer ordered her Sudanese wor(ers% She as(ed him to do something for her &ut he refused to do it <ust &ecause the employer was a woman as the following datum shows* DI repeated my self% I raised my voice% 2inally he turned his head slightly, still not facing me% 3I do not ta(e order from women,4 he growled -Datum num&er 1;10!% 's it is narrated in the story, the Sudanese (ept on ignoring the 'uthor!s order until the secretary of the author had insisted that he should do the order% The similar assumption was also held &y the society in general% The author e)perienced the turmoil when she was e)pecting a &a&y% #iving in the society in which having male &a&y was such an issue, she e)pected that her &a&y would &e a &oy% She illustrates that longing for a &oy was <ust a whim that occupied her in those last wee(s of pregnancy as shown in the following datum* I (new now that in Saudi 'ra&ia it was vital that I have a son -Datum num&er .?% 2or Saudi women, having male heirs has something to do with her status in the society as the following datum illustrates*42or Saudis women, it is essential to produce male heirs% It is not <ust a question of your personal status in society -Datum num&er .104% In the a&ove datum we learn that male gender is somehow prefera&le than female% 2urther, she said that in the society of the setting since rpoducing male heir is essential, married women feel their personal status when they are called &y the name of their son% Hven the author herself never called her mother in law &y her name &ut &y the name of her oldest son as shown in the datum given &elow* I always called my mother in law Em Ieslam% She had a name of her own, of course, &ut it was never used% #i(e most women in the (ingdom, she too( the name of her eldest son%- if she has only daughters, a Saudi woman carries the name of her first &orn> until a son comes, and his name supersedes his sister!s0 -Datum num&er ?10% The value of women inferiority is also implied in the attitude of the male wor(ers who seemed to regard that women!s <o&s were low in quality, as the author perceived from the attitude of her male wor(ers living in her compound% The wor(ers scorned what they consider women!s wor( as e)emplified &y the following datum* 3The man who lived there went home to see their wives and families perhaps once every two years% They scorned what they considered womenDs wor( -Datum num&er ..04%

9 Since inferiority is constructed in the society of the setting, the women!s dependency to men is prescri&ed% ,omen have no right to decide or to choose% ,ithout the hus&and!s permission, a wife in Saudi 'ra&ia can not do anything as illustrated in the following datum* ' wife in Saudi 'ra&ia cannot do anything without her hus&and!s permission% She cannot go out, cannot study, often cannot eat at his ta&le% ,omen in Saudi 'ra&ia must live in o&edience, in isolation, and in the fear that they might &e cast out and summarily divorced -Datum num&er 5J0% The attitudes descri&ed a&ove surely violate the gender equality principles that women are also entitled to the same dignity as men% The 6ur!an is e)plicit in its emphasis on the equality of women and men &efore 8od* 3:ever will I suffer to &e lost the wor( of any of you, &e heKshe male or female* you are mem&ers one of another%%-The 6ur!an ?*1.C0 -.3.- T"e P( "*b*t* + ! E+te(*+, M .0#e ! ( 3 1e+ ,e learn from the novel that in Saudi 'ra&ia, women were not allowed to enter the mosque% The prohi&ition is illustrated in the following datum* 3,e were not permitted to pray in pu&lic space> we were women% In Saudi 'ra&ia women are not permitted to step into a mosque -Datum num&er /904% To analyze the datum related to the women!s right on the access of mosque, we may refer to the Sunna that @rophet -p&uh0 granting the permission to women to attend the mosque and pray &ehind the row of men% The @rophet, -p&uh0 is reported to have said* LDon=t stop women from going to mosques at nightL% It is also reported that +e even advised the companions* 3Do not prevent the female servant of 'llah from going to the mosque4% 'nd hus&ands were specifically told &y him* 3,hen your womenfol( as(ed you for permission to attend the mosque do not prevent them4% -.3.6 Se,(e,'t* + It is revealed in the novel that women in Saudi 'ra&ia are not allowed to go to the pu&lic space as they please &ecause of the segregation of the se)es% The segregation leads to many other prohi&itions and prescriptions% Ene of the consequences is that the society prescri&es that women of quality could not shop as the following datum shows* 3"ut "in #aden women could not shopG>men might see her -Datum num&er /?04%

5 'nother prohi&ition related to the segregation is that women are not allowed to drive a car% The following datum e)emplifies the prohi&ition* 3There was no reason to go out, and in any case we could not go out* and legally could not drive -Datum num&er 5/04 Relating this to the gender equality principles, the prohi&itions are considered as violations of the principles that women have the right to participate in pu&lic affair as the following verse of The 6ur!an quoted in "adawi -1..C0 reveals* The &elievers, men and women, are protectors, one of another* they en<oin what is <ust and for&id what is evil* they o&serve regular prayers, practice regular charity, and o&ey 'llah and +is apostle% En them will 'llah pour +is mercy* for 'llah is H)alted in power, ,ise -6ur=an .*510% The following verse of The 6ur!an quoted in "adawi -1..C0 also clearly &ears out that woman can go out of their houses* LE @rophetF tell your wives and daughters and the women of the &elievers to lower their outer garments on their persons% That is li(ely to allow them to &e recognised and &y consequence, not &e molested, and 8od is most 2orgiving and most (indL -'l 'hza&, C.0% Islam does not call for segregation &etween men and women% 'l Tura&i!s article Women in Islam and Muslim Society -http*KKwww%<annah%orgKsistersKtura&i%html0 shows us that there is no segregation of se)es in pu&lic area% +e e)emplifies one of the evidence that women can engage in &usiness and commerce in the tradition of the @rophet -p&uh0 as follows* Ta(e the case of 6ailah Umm>"ani 'tmar, one of the merchant ladies% She said, LI am a woman who &uys and sellsL% -'l Isa&ah0% Umar I&n 'l $hatta& delegate the supervision of administrative mar(et affairs to Shaff=a &int '&dullah &in '&d Shams% Umar used to see( her advice and respect her -'l>Isa&ah0% Islam does not call for segregation &etween men and women -Tura&i, M%0% -.3.7 D*2 (ce$ 3 1e+. Gett*+, N c"*)$ C#.t $% R*,"t 2rom the novel we are assured that it was the custom that when a women is divorced, the child custody will automatically go to the father% It is illustrated in the following datum* 3If I had &een in Saudi 'ra&ia, the divorce could have &een so simple% It would have &een over in less than half day, and I would lose my children forever -Datum num&er 1/104% If we relate this to the gender equality principles, we can assume this is another (ind of violation% In ideal marriage men and women are equal% They have right and responsi&ility and child custody is among those rights that also go to women% In the following hadith

J quoted in Ideals and role models for women in ur!an, "adith and Sirah -pu&lished &y

Islamic%org0, we note how @ropet -p&uh0 solves the case related to child custody dispute &y as(ing the child* 3This is your father and this is your mother, so ta(e whichever of them you wish &y the hand -'&u Dawud, :asa=i, Darimi04% -.3.8 N Ob)*,'t* + ! E$#c't*+, 3 1e+ +aving awareness on the custom of the society where they were living, the author thin(s that there is great possi&ility that her two daughters may not get education &ecause they are women as the following datum* 3Unless I had a son, I would need a &rother in law!s approval to leave the country, or even Neddah% ,afah and :a<ia could &e denied an education, or married to a person of their guardian!s choosing, without any input of me -Datum num&er .C04% 3To this day, there is no legal o&ligation to educate girls in Saudi 'ra&ia% 1any Saudi men do not send their daughters to school, and very few of them feel it is important -Datum num&er 17704% Relating this to the gender equality principle, women!s right is denied in the case presented in the a&ove datum &ecause education and (nowledge is more than <ust a right% See(ing (nowledge is a mandate upon men and women in Islam% The concept is clearly stated in one of the @rophet! -p&uh0 sayings quoted in "adawi -1..C0* 3To see( (nowledge is duty for every 1uslim4% -.3.9 F (ce$ M'((*',e 's descri&ed in the novel, women in the setting also have to accept the fact that their guardian could also decide whom they would marry% 2rom the novel, we can see that the author worried a&out her daughter!s future% She was scared of thin(ing that this would happen to her daughters as shown in the following datum* 3Unless I had a son, I would need a &rother in law!s approval to leave the country, or even Neddah% ,afah and :a<ia could &e denied an education, or married to a person of their guardian!s choosing, without any input of me -Datum num&er .C04% Relating this to the gender equality principle, we may assume that women!s right is violated% Ene of recorded sayings of the @rophet -p&uh0 quoted in "adawi -1..50 told us that to consult the marital proposal is a must in Islamic marriage as illustrated &elow* I&n '&&as reported that a girl came to the 1essenger of 'llah, and she reported that her father had forced her to marry without her consent% The 1essenger of 8od gave her the choice

. -"etween accepting the marriage or invalidating it0 -'hmad0% 'nother version of the report states that Lthe girl said* ='ctually, I accept this marriage, &ut I wanted to let women (now that parents have no right to force a hus&and on them%=L -I&n>1a<ah0% -.3.: Te1; ('(% M'((*',e 2rom the novel we learn that in Saudi 'ra&ia men can set a marriage contract for a period of time% In addition, this concept of marriage is considered legal as the following datum illustrates* 'fter many years of living in Saudi 'ra&ia I learned that, in addition to maintaining wives and divorced wives, Shei(h 1ohamed sometimes chose to esta&lish contact with semi wives% The practice of serah#what we would call concu&ines, though the word is not perfect one> is not well regarded in Saudi 'ra&ia, and it is something you encounter rather rarely, &ut it has always &een legal% @ro&a&ly &ecause in Islam no child illegitimate, it was long ago esta&lished that man could set up a contract with a girl, or her father, for a (ind of limited marital arrangement% The marriage last an hour or a lifetime, according to the contract% ,hatever the relationship, the semi>wife does not inherit wealth on man!s death -Datum num&er J10% In the a&ove datum, the temporary marriage is called 3serah4 %The practice has another term among the Islamic law school called mut$a% To descri&e how the practice leads the in<ustice for women, I found the e)planation from one of the Islamic law school arguments -http*KKwww%al>islam%orgKal>seratKmutaKC%htm0% Ene of the arguments is as follows* MM%&ecause it e)cludes such things as inheritance, divorce, sworn allegation, forswearing, and %ihar. Since these necessary concomitants of marriage do not apply to mut!a, it cannot &e considered marriage, so the woman cannot &e considered a legitimate wife% If she is neither a wife nor property, se)ual intercourse with her is illegitimate* =@rosperous are the &elievers, who% %%guard their private parts, save from their wives and what their right hands own% %%A &ut whosoever see(s after more than that, those are the transgressors= -7?*1>50% +ence, persons who engage in mut!a transgress 8od=s law%% -.3.1< Fe1')e Ge+*t') M#t*)'t* + ,omen issue presented in the novel also includes the practice of female circumcision -2emale 8enital 1utilation0% The practice is revealed in the datum* 3Ene time I read a magazine article a&out female circumcision> the horri&le practice of mutilating girls! genital, which is still common in Hgypt and parts of ,est 'frica -Datum num&er 1;C0% Islam refers the the se)ual relationship in marriage as one of 3mutual satisfaction4 that is considered a mercy from 'llah -swt0% The verse is given as follows* 3It is lawful for you to go in unto your wives during the night preceding the -day=s0 fast* they are as a garment

1; for you and you are as a garment for them -7*1J50%%%and +e has put love and mercy &etween you -The 6ur!an, ?;*7104% -.3.11 P )%,'1% 1onogamyGone hus&and, one wifeG is the norm for marriage in Islam% +owever, as it is revealed in the novel, we can see that in the society of the setting, it is common for men to practice polygamy as the following datum e)emplifies* Some of the Saudi princess, whom I met then, and later, lived lives of such decadence and inertia that it was hard not to feel disgust% They were &rought up in complete o&edience and a&solute foolishness% Some were married to men who had several wives, and they had little to d with their hus&ands% ' few had &een divorced% Their children were cared for &y &attalions of maids and household personnel, and tough those princes lac(ed for noting in terms of material possession, they also had nothing to do -Datum num&er 1?C0% To descri&e how the practice of polygamy violates the gender equality principles, we can refer to the following verse of The 6ur!an quoted in the article pu&lished &y the oalition on women!s right in Islam -7;;?0% The verse related to the polygamy is as follows* 'nd if you fear that you shall not &e a&le to deal <ustly -with your wives0 then marry only oneL% The 6ur=an imposes limitations upon the then>e)isting practice of polygamy and is the only scripture to contain the phrase Lmarry only oneL -The 6ur!an, /* ?0% 2urther, it argues that monogamy is the norm of Islamic marriage% The argument is as follows* The 6ur=an imposes limitations upon the then>e)isting practice of polygamy and is the only scripture to contain the phrase Lmarry only oneL% The norm is also supported &y the fact that* the @rophet -p&uh0 was monogamous for more than 7C years, i%e% throughout the lifetime of his first wife Siti $hadi<a -r%a%0 and that his polygamous marriages after her death were to widowed or divorced women for political and tri&al reasons% The only virgin he married was his second wife, 'ishah -r%a%0% There is also an authentic Tradition that the @rophet -@&uh0 for&ade his son>in>law, 'li i&n '&i Tali& -r%a%0 from marrying another woman unless 'li first divorced the @rophet=s daughter, 2atimah -r%a%0, ' great>granddaughter of the @rophet -p&uh0, Sa(inah &inti +ussein, a granddaughter of 'li and 2atimah, put various conditions in her marriage contract, including the condition that her hus&and would have no right to ta(e another wife during their marriage%

11 +owever, we note that the e)ercise of polygamy is utilized &y the society in the setting to facilitate se)ual desire rather than under e)traordinary circumstances as the datum given &elow* Islam permits a man to marry four wives, and most Saudis are content to marry one or two or most% "ut li(e a few of the royal princess, Shei(h 1uhammad swelled the ran( of is wives &y divorcing older omen and marrying new ones as the whim too( him -Datum num&er 590% 6. CONCLUSION%% The violations were the results of the practices and laws of the society of the setting summarized as follows* honor (illing, the requirement to cover almost all of women!s &ody -women!s face covering0, the women inferiority constructed in the society,segregatio,denying women!s access into mosque, denying divorced women!s right for child custody, women are denied from their right for educatio, forced marriage, temporary marriages, female genital mutilation, and polygamy% The findings lead us to the conclusion that in the society setting of the novel in which Islam is used to legitimize its government, women are not truly treated according to the gender equality principles revealed in the Islamic standards% BIBLIOGRAPHY '&ou>"a(r, Emaima% 1...% &ender 'ers(ecti)es in Islamic Tradition% http*+ +www.minaret.org+gender.html. '&ul 2adl, 1ona% 1..1% ,nderstanding &ender in Muslim Society. www%muslim womenstudies%comKgender%html% 'l>Tura&i, Dr +assan% OOOOO% Women in Islam and Muslim Society% www%<anah% org% "adawi, Dr% Namal% 1..C% &ender E-uity in Islam. http*KKwww%<annah% orgKgenderequityK equitynotes%html% "adran= 1argot. 7;;7. Islamic .eminism* What!s in a /ame0 http*KKwee(ly%ahram% org%egK 7;;7KC9.Kcu1%html% "in #adin, armen% 7;;/% Inside the Kingdom% :ew Ior(, ,arner &oo(% +assan, Riffat, @h%D%OOO% Members one of another* &ender E-uality and 1ustice in Islam % www%religiousconsultation%org%html% "assan, 'h.2, Riffat. &ender E-uality and 1ustice in Islam. http://www.irfi. org/articles/articles_ ! _ "!/ge#$er_e%&alit'_a#$ (&stice inOi%ht%

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