Chapter 4: Women In Society - Chapter 4 Women In Society In nearly all countries surveyed a majority of Muslims say that a wife should always obey her

Chapter 4: Women In Society - Chapter 4 Women In Society In...

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Chapter 4: Women In Society In nearly all countries surveyed, a majority of Muslims say that a wife should always obey her husband. At the same time, there also is general agreement – at least outside sub-Saharan Africa – that a woman should have the right to decide for herself whether to wear a veil in public. Muslims are less unified when it comes to questions of divorce and inheritance. The percentage of Muslims who say that a wife should have the right to divorce her husband varies widely among the countries surveyed, as does the proportion that believes sons and daughters should inherit equally. In some, but not all, countries surveyed, Muslim women are more supportive of women’s rights than are Muslim men. Differences on these
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questions also are apparent between Muslims who want sharia to be the official law of the land in their country and those who do not. Women and Veiling Muslims in many of the countries surveyed generally favor a woman’s right to choose whether to wear a veil in public. 30 This view is especially prevalent in Southern and Eastern Europe, Central Asia and Southeast Asia, including at least nine-in-ten Muslims in Bosnia-Herzegovina (92%), Kosovo (91%) and Turkey (90%).
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There is less agreement among Muslims in the Middle East-North Africa
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region and South Asia. While more than eight-in-ten Muslims in Tunisia (89%) and Morocco (85%) say women should have the right to choose whether they wear a veil, fewer than half in Egypt (46%), Jordan (45%), Iraq (45%) and Afghanistan (30%) say the same. Sub-Saharan Africa is the one region surveyed where most Muslims do not think women should have the right to decide if they wear a veil. The only country in the region where a majority supports a woman’s right to decide is Senegal (58%); by contrast, fewer than a third support giving women this right in Nigeria (30%) and the Democratic Republic of the Congo (29%). Wives’ Role Muslims in most countries surveyed say that a wife should always obey her husband. In 20 of the 23 countries where the question was asked, at least half of Muslims believe a wife must obey her spouse.
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Muslims in South Asia and Southeast Asia overwhelmingly hold this view. In
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all countries surveyed in these regions, roughly nine-in-ten or more say wives must obey their husbands. Similarly, in all countries surveyed in the Middle East and North Africa, about three-quarters or more say the same.
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