Revolutionary & Heroic Muslim Women from History to Today


Muslim Women Leaders

Contrary to popular belief, Muslim women have served as revolutionary and heroic leaders. Yet this image is not what our history records or what our present reflects.tahirih_medium

For example, the current Prime Ministers of Bangladesh (Sheikh Hasina Wazed) and Mali (Cissé Mariam Kaïdama Sidibé) are Muslim women. Similarly, the current President of Kosovo, Atife Jahjaga, is the world’s youngest female president, as well as her country’s first female Muslim president.

Since 1988, Bangladesh, Indonesia, Mali, Pakistan, Kosovo, Kyrgyzstan, Senegal and Turkey have been led, at some point, by a Muslim woman president or prime minister. Source

This project is just beginning.


Scholars and Philanthropists

Notable Muslim women throughout history and in the contemporary world have contributed to civilization as scholars, legal jurists, rulers, benefactresses, warriors, businesswomen, poets, mystics, among endless positions.

Women who lived in Prophet Muhammad (PBUH)’s time and especially in his household, we mention-:

  • Khadijah binte Khuwaylid, his wealthy businesswoman and trader wife, who supported him morally and financially during his prophecy;
  • Aishah binte Abi Bakr, his other wife, who transmitted a great amount of knowledge learned from the Prophet, thus becoming a great jurist and scholar;
  • Umm Salamah, another wise wife who counseled the prophet on political matters;
  • Hafsah binte Umar, daughter of 2nd Caliph Umar ibn al-Khattab, who was entrusted with the first copy of the Quran upon her father’s death;
  • Fatimah tuz-Zehra, the prophet’s daughter, who was deeply loved by her father;
  • Nusaibah who defended the prophet heroically during the battle of Uhud.

Muslim women in later times from the 8th century onward contributed in every field of what later developed an Islamic civilization in the classical age.

  • Ashifa binte Abdullah for example was the first Muslim woman to be appointed by Calip… read more at

Queens and Rulers

Finally, as queens and rulers, Muslim famous women that stand out are

  • Arwa al-Sulayhi, an 11th century Yemeni who ruled for 71 years and was known as the Noble Lady.
  • Sultana Shajarat al-Durr took control over Egypt after her husband’s death in the 13th century.
  • Sultana Razia, on the other hand, was the only female to sit on India’s throne in Delhi for four years in the 13th century.
  • Begum Kaikhursau Jahan. In central India and closer to our contemporary world, a family of women rulers ruled over the principality of Bhopal from 1819 to 1924, the last of whom was Begum Kaikhursau Jahan. This family was famous for building railways, water works, and a postal system. Source


1. Nusayba bint Ka’b Al-Ansariyah (Arabia, unknown-634 C.E.)

Nusayba was of one of the first advocates for the rights of Muslim women. Notably, she asked the Prophet Muhammad, “Why does God only address men (in the Quran)?” Soon after this exchange, the Prophet received a revelation in Chapter 33, Verse 35 that mentions women can attain every quality to which men have access. The verse also conclusively settled that women stand on the same spiritual level as men. She was viewed as a visionary who transcended her own generation.

2. Rab’ia al-Adawiyya (Iraq, 717-801 C.E.)

Rab’ia was an eighth century Sufi saint who set forth the doctrine of “Divine Love.” Rab’ia was born… read more at


Categories: Islam

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