Customer Reviews for

Nine Parts of Desire: The Hidden World of Islamic Women

Average Rating 3.5
( 50 )
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5 Star

(22)

4 Star

(12)

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(3)

2 Star

(6)

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(7)

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Most Helpful Favorable Review

5 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

an unusually balanced portrayal

Books on Islam and especially books regarding the treatment of women in the Islamic world tend to be, for the most part, biased and one-sided, clinging to cries of human rights violations and oppression. And while it's true that these things do occur in some countries, ...
Books on Islam and especially books regarding the treatment of women in the Islamic world tend to be, for the most part, biased and one-sided, clinging to cries of human rights violations and oppression. And while it's true that these things do occur in some countries, that is by all means a cultural practice and is due to the misinterpretation of the religion by fundamentalist regimes. Islam in its truest form is a religion that honors and respects the woman, and many women choose to wear the veil as a sign of modesty and submission to God. I thought Brooks did a pretty good job showing the cultural implications and contrasting them with Islamic law, especially with issues like female circumcision and abuse, which are clearly not permitted in Islam. Although I sometimes detected a hint of negativity in her voice, I believe this to be one of the more accuate books on this subject that can be found today.

posted by Anonymous on January 5, 2004

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Most Helpful Critical Review

4 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

definately misleading

It is so obvious from the very first page that the writer started this book with the intention 'this book is to tell the readers that Islam is an oppressive religion and women in Islam and very unhappy'. Those who 'like' to hear that, will love the book, those who reall...
It is so obvious from the very first page that the writer started this book with the intention 'this book is to tell the readers that Islam is an oppressive religion and women in Islam and very unhappy'. Those who 'like' to hear that, will love the book, those who really know how Muslim women live their lives, will immediately understand that this book is a piece of crap. I don't understand, why does this writer force her biased ideas on the readers. Ultimately, anyone who does not know about Islam would end up thinking that because the writer has 'been to Muslim countries' knows 'the religion' which is very untrue. I am a Shia Muslim girl and I would like people to know that I am an independent person with a free will. Islam does not stop me from earning a livelihood or taking decisions about my life. Yes, it does guide me to the right path where, I cannot be exploited in any way and I am very glad it does. I was not born in the middle east, but I have lived a major part of my life there, and now reside in the west, so I think I am at least familiar with all these cultures, never the less, I am trying to understand the western culture with an open mind, unlike the writer of this book. wearing hijab (a veil) is my personal choice because I don't want men to ogle at me when I step out of my home. I want to be rather identified as a 'dignified person'. I am and was always loved by my family and my father, brothers or my husband never disrespected me. Personally, after knowing women and men from different religions and the attitude of men towards the women, I feel that a Muslim women are actually more liberated, than women in other religions. Islam does not make me any lesser of a person just because I am a female, in fact, as a women I am more respected, valued and hence more protected by my religion. By the way, as the writer shows interest in quoting the words of Imam Ali (A.S) with regards to the parts of desire, and is trying to show the status of women in Islam, Perhaps she might want to gather some sayings of his about how women should be treated in Islam and their actual status and respect in the religion according to Imam Ali (A.S) himself, or may be the Holy Quran, just for a better understanding

posted by Anonymous on August 22, 2008

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 9, 2008

    ...sigh...

    All those neo-orientalists out there will eat this book up like candy...lets start with the good...the writer makes an excellent point when she points out the critics 'wrath on the commentators criticizing the practices, and not on the crimes themselves'. Furthermore, she does pull the reader in with her lush descriptions...but what bothers me is her tone. Why does she mock that which she does not believe...I would think that spending so much time with the Muslim women 'whom she claims have become her close friends' she would have narrated the events without peppering them with her personal prejudices and judgements. The quotes from the Quran before each chapter are rife with scorn especially when taken in context with the title and content of the particular chapter. It's hard to accept her 'neutral stance' when you can literally see the contemptuous smile on her face as she writes about a religion she is so obviously not willing to learn anything about...when I was done, it basically left me asking...so what is the point of this book?

    4 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 30, 2004

    less than objective

    Brooks argues that 'the Muslim world' should be held accountible for the actions of a minority group of extremists. Certainly she covers some troubling issues regarding the experiences of women in some Muslim communities, but she does not discuss the women in politics, religious groups and social service organizations who are working to the betterment of women and families. She does not give reasonable analysis to the complex historical, political, economic and religious forces that shape many of the practices westerners find objectionable. True, we would all like to see these abuses eradicated, but without considering them within their social context, considering their significance and how to allow communities and families to retain their identities while reshaping certain traditional ideas, is biased and short-sighted.

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted June 20, 2009

    I Also Recommend:

    I'm Tired of People Saying That Muslim Women Are Oppressed!

    Bismillah...People need to stop assuming things and let the facts speak. Muslim women HAVE rights and they are not lowly nor are they portrayed that way in The Holy Quran! America is such a hypocrite! Wasn't there such a thing as the feminist movement here in America? Don't women face sexual harrassment in the workplace?? Yeah okay! Just because a muslimah's body parts are not visible doesn't mean that she's in a prison. A woman should respect herself enough to know that she shouldn't be on blatant display for all and any to see. Amuslim woman can work and that is her money. Is it her right to be taken care of by her husband if she chooses.
    Get the facts straight and stop putting a negative light on Islam that is NOT TRUE. Islam is the fastest growing religon maybe that's why they try so hard to spread lies. May Allah have mercy on you and me. Allahu Akbar.

    Safiya Abdur-Rahman

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 26, 2011

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 20, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted June 15, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

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