Women in Contemporary Islamic Society: A Study of Iran


1 Post Doc Fellow in Centre of Central Asian Studies, University of Kashmir

2 Doctoral Scholar in Centre of Central Asian Studies, University of Kashmir


With the overthrow of the Shah and the rise to power of Ayatollah Khomeini in 1979, Iran changed from a monarchy to an Islamic regime based on an Islamic Constitution and Islamic laws. As a result, a western stereotype of Iranian women as veiled and helpless creatures got created. This stereotypical view has dominated public opinion since 1979 in both Western societies in general, and among western scholars in particular. Meanwhile, a remarkable development related to Iranian women has been taking place in the years after the revolution, i.e. a growth in labor force, political participation and increasing access to education. In this context it can therefore be argued that paradoxically the Islamic revival in Iran has been having a positive influence on the development of the status and the position of women in the public sphere in contemporary Iran. This paper aims to highlight the current position of women in Iran and how far they have been able to utilize the rights and privileges granted to them by the Constitution of the Islamic Republic of Iran.