Authority and Epistemology in Islamic Medical Ethics of Women’s Reproductive Health

11 Apr 2023


Announced by the University of Pittsburgh:

Professor Ayubi discusses the limitations of fiqh-based medical ethics in addressing gender concerns and argues that ethical epistemology of Islamic medical ethics ought to center women and non-binary Muslims’ experiences. She does a close reading of jurisprudential opinions (fatwas) and the queries that originate them and also presents research from interviews that demonstrate a mismatch between the issues important to the questioners and jurists (muftis). Ultimately, she shows that a gender contentious epistemology in Islamic medical ethics is achieved through centering women’s experiences and interpretive authority.


Dr. Zahra Ayubi is an associate professor of religion at Dartmouth College. She specializes in women and gender in premodern and contemporary Islamic ethics and has published on gendered concepts of ethics, justice, and religious authority, and on Muslim feminist thought and American Muslim women's experiences. She is the author of Gendered Morality: Classical Islamic Ethics of the Self, Family, and Society (Columbia, 2019). Her current book project, Women as Humans: Life, Death, and Gendered Being in Islamic Medical Ethics, is a textual, ethnographic, and philosophical study of gender and gendered experiences with Muslim medical ethics.


Professor Shenila Khoja-Moolji is the Hamad bin Khalifa al-Thani Associate Professor of Muslim Societies at Georgetown University. She researches and writes about the interplay of gender, race, religion, and power in transnational contexts, and explores this theme particularly in relation to Muslim populations in South Asia and in the North American diaspora. Professor Khoja-Moolji’s latest book, Rebuilding Community: Displaced Women and the Making of a Shia Ismaili Muslim Sociality (Oxford University Press) is available for preorder here.

Event Date: 
Tuesday, April 11, 2023 - 1:30pm to 2:30pm
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