A local bookstore has “sold out” of a controversial marriage guide that advises Muslim men on how to beat their wives. The book called ‘A Gift for Muslim Couple’ which was being sold at Islamic Books and Souvenirs on Gerrard St. instructs men about how to punish women and the way to discipline them – with restraints, scoldings, and beatings.
TORONTO SUN The 160-page book, published by Idara Impex in New Delhi, India, is written by Hazrat Maulana Ashraf Ali Thanvi, who’s described in the book’s foreword as a “prolific writer on almost every topic of Islamic learning.”
It wasn’t clear whether the shop has ordered more copies of the book, but it’s available at online Islamic bookstores and even through eBay.
In the book’s opening pages, it is written that “it might be necessary to restrain her with strength or even to threaten her.”
Page 45 contains the rights of the husband, which include his wife’s inability to leave “his house without his permission,” and that his wife must “fulfil his desires” and “not allow herself to be untidy … but should beautify herself for him … ”
In terms of physical punishment, the book advises that a husband may scold her, “beat by hand or stick,” withhold money from her or “pull (her) by the ears,” but should “refrain from beating her excessively.”
Moderate Muslim voice Tarek Fatah says the shopkeeper should be charged for selling such a book. “I wouldn’t say it’s hate, but it is inciting men to hit women,” said Fatah, who identified the book’s author as a prominent Islamic scholar. “This is new to you, but the Muslim community knows that this is widespread, that a woman can be beaten. Muslim leaders will deny this. ”
Male dominance over women has been making headlines for some time, with the recent lengthy trial and conviction of the Shafia family.
Mohammad Shafia, 59, his second wife, Tooba Yahya, 42, and their son, Hamed, 21, were each convicted in January on four counts of first-degree murder in what was characterized as an honour killing of four female family members as punishment for disobedience. They were handed life sentences with no chance of parole for 25 years.
Shafia’s three daughters and his first wife were found drowned in a car at the bottom of the Rideau Canal in Kingston, Ont., in June 2009.
Eric Brazau says he was flipping through the marriage guide while in the bookstore around a month ago. Brazau bought it out of curiosity but was taken aback when he found dozens of chapters and passages giving Muslim husbands advice on controlling, restraining, scolding and beating their wives.
“At first, I thought that it is incredible that this kind of thing can be found in Canada,” said Brazau. “And then I thought, radical Islam is not coming to Canada, it is already here.”
TORONTO SUN – Farzana Baig says she is angry a book has surfaced in Toronto that instructs Muslim men how to make their wives submissive through violence. “It is not like that in our community. This is upsetting. A wrong thing against our community. My husband doesn’t beat me. I haven’t heard of this. If it happens it is rare,” Baig said.
Her husband said, “This isn’t proper reading and it shouldn’t be out there. It makes the whole community look wrong,” he said. The book is an insult to the Muslim community said Mohammed with the Muslim Welfare Centre, who asked his last name not be used.
“I have never heard of something like this. I’m surprised it was published and I am angry to be portrayed in this light,” he said.