Barlas, Asma. “Globalizing Equality: Muslim Women, Theology, and Feminisms,” in On Shifting Ground: Middle Eastern Women in the Global Era, ed. Fera Simone. New York: Feminist Press, 2005.
Asma Barlas holds a PhD in International Studies from the University of Denver and an M.A. in Journalism from the University of Punjab in Pakistan. She is currently a professor of Politics and the director of the Center for the Study of Culture, Race, and Ethnicity at Ithaca College, New York. Barlas was granted the position of Spinoza Chair in Philosophy at the University of Amsterdam in the Netherlands in Spring 2008.
In this piece, Barlas attempts to provide a reading of the Quran from a perspective that is conducive to promotion of sexual equality. Her main focus, however, is to critically describe the role of Information Technology, specifically the Internet, in enabling democracy in Muslim societies: she detects the emergence of new forms of Islam through the Internet, where traditional authoritative scholars are seemingly been replaced with anonymous persons. Convinced that certain readings of the Quran can offer sexual equality, she maintains that Muslims should find liberation through re-reading of the Holy Text rather than turning to western notions of freedom and equality.