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Access Type

WSU Access

Date of Award

January 2018

Degree Type


Degree Name



Classical and Modern Languages, Literatures, and Cultures

First Advisor

Vanessa J. De Gifis


This project is an analysis of the language of coercion, or ikrah, in the Qur’an to deter- mine how it may figure into the reclassification of rape in Islamic law. It will thoroughly analyze the Qur’anic text for the word coercion in various forms, and compare the different ways it is used in order to move from a shared responsibility of the rape between rapist and victim to one that places it squarely on the rapist. It will advocate for a reclassification of rape in Islamic law to one of ḥarābah, or forcible and violent taking, in order to remove the stringent requirements necessary to prosecute crimes of zinā, or illicit sex.

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