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Sefaty, Zoreh

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El País - Spain | 12/06/2006

Zoreh Sefati on the emancipation of women

Journalist Angeles Espinosa traveled to Iran to meet Zoreh Sefati, who holds the honorific title of mujtahida, the female equivalent of an ayatollah, conferred upon particularly learned members of the Shiite clergy. Sefati, who founded the first Islamic school for women in Iran, sought to convince the journalist that there is no discrimination against women in the Islamic Republic of Iran. "In the West, people are not aware that Islam does not treat men and women differently. A woman can attain the same level of knowledge and recognition as a man. If there are very few female mujtahida (only five), it is not the fault of men; it is that women have not wanted the title. It requires a long and difficult commitment, and few women are prepared to enter the political or religious arena. But the same situation exists in european countries."

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