Learning Hour: “Muslim Women & Sacred Spaces”

Sunday, March 21, 12:15 pm

In this talk, Dr. Mahjabeen Dhala will draw on two major Islamic pilgrimage sites, the Kaaba in Mecca and the Gauharshad Mosque in Iran, to highlight the narratives of women enshrined within these sites and their foundational role in curating sacred spaces for religious practice, spiritual nourishment, and social justice.

Dr. Majabeen Dhala received her MA in Islamic Studies from the GTU in 2017 and then joined the GTU’s doctoral program as a Presidential scholar in the department of Sacred Texts and their Interpretation. She is part of the Class of 2021 PhD graduates. Her work focusses on women’s contributions to Islamic doctrine, practice, and devotional piety to explore ways in which Islamic tradition intersects with, translates into, and informs modern modalities for pursuing social justice, especially with regard to the lived experiences of visibly Muslim women. Her dissertation looks at the seventh-century Sermon of Fatima to trace early Shia activist voices, especially those of women. Before coming to the GTU, she studied foundational Islamic texts at Islamic seminaries in Syria, Iran, and Dubai. In her capacity as a religious leader for over two decades, she has traveled widely, studying and learning from and with Muslim women in the global north and south, gaining unique insights into the issues and concerns they face.