Talk:Women's rights in Saudi Arabia

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Former good article nominee Women's rights in Saudi Arabia was a Social sciences and society good articles nominee, but did not meet the good article criteria at the time. There are suggestions below for improving the article. Once these issues have been addressed, the article can be renominated. Editors may also seek a reassessment of the decision if they believe there was a mistake.
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GAN comments[edit]

I won't review the article, but I will help edit and point out possible problems.

  • In the section, 'male guardian', why is the Quranic verse featured so prominently. Are there multiple sources that show that Saudi law is in accordance with the verse?
  • Same for the section mobility.
  • Finally, if the verses are featured, why aren't competing interpretations of them given?
  • "... uncovering the face which is considered obligatory for women to cover in Saudi". Extremely inaccurate, given that covering the face is forbidden while on the pilgrimage in Mecca. Similarly Saudi state TV broadcasts women whose faces are uncovered (e.g. Rania al-Baz)
  • Where exactly does this source say that women are not allowed to use taxis in Saudi?
  • Why is a quote by Mona Eltahawy, a journalist with biased views, featured in one of the sections? Should we be including it at all, given that she holds little notability or significance?
  • The source used to say that women's sports are banned, incidentally starts off by illustrating women playing basketball in Saudi Arabia. It appears the source was quite distorted.
  • Why on earth would an encyclopedia feature a quote from an anonymous student?
  • "Saudi women are denied many of the same rights that ‘Blacks’ and ‘Coloreds’ were denied in apartheid South Africa and yet the kingdom still belongs to the very same international community that kicked Pretoria out of its club." Who said it? Why is he/she important?
  • Sources after the mention of Daniel Pipes, don't actually talk about him (in the qupotes provided in the refs). This seems to be a case of false/misattribution.
  • Beware of sources that are self-contradictory. Was the girl unmarried? So how could she possibly commit adultery? If the girl "confessed", then the action in question must have been committed by her. Yet rape is forced. So how can a girl "confess" of rape. I'd disregard the article in this case and look for something more credible.

I think this article should resolve the NPOV and original research issues.Bless sins (talk) 22:00, 7 October 2010 (UTC)

More specifically, these are general guidelines:
  1. Anecdotes from individuals are not reliable sources. Not unless they were published in a major newspaper (multiple is preferred).
  2. While religion intersects this, religious texts must be used carefully, and not in a way where it appears the editor is interpreting them. All interpretation must be left to reliable sources.
  3. Commentary in editorials and letters to editors, which is extremely common, best be avoided. Both for the sake of the length of the article, and for meeting RS. If someone said something worth noting, it will be mentioned as fact in news articles.
  4. Try to recruit an "expert" (someone who has lived in Saudi) for verifying information. It is not mandatory, but recommended.Bless sins (talk) 22:09, 7 October 2010 (UTC)
  • I don't understand your comments about the Koran. Nothing in the article interprets the Koran, or says or implies that the Koran is good or bad. The Koran is a major part of the background of Saudi law. Decorating the sides with Koranic quotes pertaining to women in an article about women is just a logical and, I hope, interesting feature.
  • The quotes from Saudi women, also, do not endorse any particular view. There is a quote from a housewife saying women should cover her face, quotes from women saying the male guardian system is good, and there are quotes from rights activists. You're welcome to add a quote from, say, a cleric if you feel that balance is important. The article is about the Everywoman, so quotes giving their view are appropriate. There is a quote from an anonymous woman because it relates a perspective from the group this article is about. This article is about anonymous women. She is not making a factual statement, just giving a simple insight.
  • The source for the apartheid comparison is the reference immediately following the quote. It is there, again, because it summarizes one of the main foreign criticisms (developed in the next few paragraphs). Again, it is an opinion, not a factual statement, which is why it is in quotes.
  • Some of your criticisms are pretty ridiculous. In this context, "adultery" is obviously a reference to extra-marital sex. The section concerns sexual assault, and the article relates an news story illustrating (the lack of) rights involving sexual assault. Ditto for the story on women's sports. It doesn't say sports are banned; the complete idea is that they are banned in principle, but some exist, and that's exactly what the source says.
  • I'll look for the source for the Pipes comment. The statements about taxis and the veil are based on general custom, like most law in Saudi Arabia. Very little is codified, and some is changing. Mecca pilgrimages and a TV personalities are not a norm, but you are free to ADD them as exceptions if you wish. In general, I wonder why you are just looking for things to delete, rather than contribute. Noloop (talk) 23:57, 21 October 2010 (UTC)

GA Review[edit]

This review is transcluded from Talk:Women's rights in Saudi Arabia/GA1. The edit link for this section can be used to add comments to the review.

Poopeee Reviewer: Aaron north (talk) 04:10, 16 October 2010 (UTC)

I have completed my initial review. After checking the sources against many of the claims, I haven't found a problem and am inclined to call the sources good. I am fine with the use of the qur'an texts and the quotes (edit: except one, see below. edit2: Qur'an quote boxes may also be a problem, see below), they seem balanced and relevant. Aaron north (talk) 08:29, 16 October 2010 (UTC)

I am currently uncertain about two larger issues aside from the smaller points listed farther below. First, NPOV. This article appears well-researched and the prose is good, but it is very difficult for me as a westerner to faithfully judge NPOV. The article does seem to take care to represent all sides objectively. Although at times it may subtly read as a pro-women's-rights advocacy piece, I believe that is simply because one side of this discussion is difficult for anyone to defend. I don't believe it is the writer that is giving this faint impression of bias, but just simply "the facts on the ground" in Saudi Arabia which trigger sympathy to one side. We should not have to force a false balance. WP:GEVAL Aaron north (talk) 08:29, 16 October 2010 (UTC)

per 2nd opinion and editor comments, we may have a NPOV problem Aaron north (T/C) 01:53, 22 October 2010 (UTC)

The second issue I am not completely sure about is the sheer size of the article. I do believe that all major aspects of the subject are covered in depth, but is there irrelevant information that should be cut out? I'm having difficulty finding anything that should be removed, each section is closely related to the subject, and would be rather small articles if split off from this article. This is simply a very, very broad subject that has been covered in depth. On the other hand, it is 99k. Are we fine with calling this one of those rare articles that is acceptable to be this large, is there some irrelevant detail that adds nothing of value and should be removed, or should portions of this article be split off into smaller articles? I'm leaning towards calling it good. Aaron north (talk) 08:29, 16 October 2010 (UTC)

Per 2nd opinion, size seems fine. Aaron north (T/C) 01:53, 22 October 2010 (UTC)

Given my uncertainty, I do not feel WP:BOLD enough to say that this is a 99% good article with a couple easy to fix issues. I will request a 2nd opinion from another reviewer to verify NPOV and size. Aaron north (talk) 08:29, 16 October 2010 (UTC)

At this point with the 2nd opinion I think I have a better handle on what this article needs. I will place this article on hold for up to a week to give the editors time to fix the issues below. Aaron north (T/C) 01:53, 22 October 2010 (UTC)
N I'm failing the article today. Most of the minor issues that were identified a week and a half ago have not been touched. The NPOV issues were a bit more specifically defined about 3 days ago, but there has not been much movement over the weekend. There are also some possible questions on reliable sources and stability with the editors not able to agree on how to fix the NPOV issues, but even if we ignore all that we seem to be too far apart on the issues that have been clearly identified, and I do not think they will be fixed in the next 4 days. Aaron north (T/C) 00:31, 25 October 2010 (UTC)
Huh? It would be helpful if you were clear. The situation, I thought, was that the only major issue is quoting the Qu'ran, which we were discussing. The minor issues you identified a week and a half ago were 1) uncertainty about length, and 2) uncertainty about NPOV. That all seemed to boil down to a discussion over whether all the Qu'ran quotes should be deleted. Now you say there are question on reliable sources. What questions? There is no list of reliable sources to check that I know of, except the source for women driving in rural areas which I updated; your other objection was a quote in the "Change" section which I replaced. So I'm totally confused when you complain that "Most of the minor issues that were identified a week and a half ago have not been touched." Could you please list the reliable source issues that disqualify this as a good article? I thought the only issue was the Qu'ran. Could you please be clear about which Good Article requirements this article violates, and how? A bulleted list would help. I'm totally confused. Noloop (talk) 03:17, 25 October 2010 (UTC)
GA review (see here for criteria)
  1. It is reasonably well written.
    a (prose): b (MoS for lead, layout, word choice, fiction, and lists):
  2. It is factually accurate and verifiable.
    a (references): b (citations to reliable sources): c (OR):
  3. It is broad in its coverage.
    a (major aspects): b (focused):
  4. It follows the neutral point of view policy.
    Fair representation without bias:
  5. It is stable.
    No edit wars, etc.:
  6. It is illustrated by images, where possible and appropriate.
    a (images are tagged and non-free images have fair use rationales): b (appropriate use with suitable captions):
  7. Overall:


Regarding the layout with the quote boxes, it is unusual, but I believe it adds value to the article. I am not talking about the content, but just the idea. They obviously have to be used with care because they could be distracting or seen as inappropriately highlighting or advancing a point of view. If done well it helps this article, because one of the problems with this article is that it is very long and does not naturally lend itself to a great deal of relevant images. The alternatives are a wall of text or seemingly random images that vaguely relate to the article. This is a highly controversial subject in which many people from many points of view are figuratively participating in a debate. As long as the content is neutral overall and appropriate, I believe it is fine to introduce or enhance some of these sections with one of these "voices". Aaron north (talk) 08:29, 16 October 2010 (UTC)

The following is a couple of concerns that I have. If you disagree or believe I made an error, please point that out too. Aaron north (talk) 08:29, 16 October 2010 (UTC)

  • In these two sentences (Saudis consider male guardianship a right of women. In a 2010 interview with the New York Times, Saudi women defended male guardianship as providing protection and love.) the claim is attached to an overly broad group. Who are "Saudis" and "Saudi women"? All Saudis and Saudi women? I doubt it.
  • In the beginning of "Purdah", that quote is just floating in the middle, seemingly attributed to no one, unless they look up the source, I guess. Same problem in the beginning of "Foreign Views".


After a second read through this today, I found a couple other issues. At this point I have spent plenty of time looking at this article and the sources so my initial review is done. If any more issues come up, it will be as a result of further discussion on the article's talk page. Aaron north (talk) 19:27, 16 October 2010 (UTC)

  • I am not sure that I agree with the inclusion of this last quote box at the end: ("We are not a bunch of Barbie dolls. All of us have faced so many challenges to get here. We are pioneers. And we are going to win." Human resources manager, Sultana al-Rowaili) I'm not sure what the purpose of that quote box is in that section, it just looks like pure highlighted advocacy, which puts NPOV in doubt. Now, granted that section is about "change" which may make this "change is coming and we're going to win" sort of quote seem relevant, but it may be too much for NPOV.
  • I don't know that the last "Miscellaneous" section is needed at all. It appears to be trivia which is only loosely related to the subject.
  • N Found another issue. I am fine with using a youtube video as a source for the fact that the youtube video exists. Why would you use it as a source for anything else? How is it a credible source for anything other than the video was posted?
  • N NPOV seems to be an issue, more on that below.

Second Opinion[edit]

I would like to get a 2nd opinion from another reviewer on NPOV and size. See above for details. Aaron north (talk) 08:29, 16 October 2010 (UTC)

Hello, I would be happy to give the second opinion. I would like to say that I do agree that per WP:NPOV the article is not suitable for the reasons you stated. I believe size is okay though. I am concerned that this become a Good Article that it would cause a NPOV tag to be added almost immediately after it is promoted and then a reassessment will be requested because of the NPOV so I think it is best to fail it now, rather than later.  JoeGazz  ▲  23:26, 21 October 2010 (UTC)
What NPOV? The main NPOV comment of the initial reviewer was "I am not sure that I agree with the inclusion of this last quote box at the end..." Is that a major NPOV issue and a reason to fail the article? It's a statement about women's rights by a Saudi woman in an article on women's rights in Saudi Arabia. What do you want? A balancing quote supporting a conservative view? It is already there, in the exact same section. Noloop (talk) 00:05, 22 October 2010 (UTC)
Thank you for taking the time to look through it and giving your impression on the two issues I was unsure of. It might be possible that something was "lost in the translation" when I was asking for a 2nd opinion, but what I mostly wanted was an honest 2nd opinion, and I got that. Aaron north (T/C) 01:29, 22 October 2010 (UTC)
I meant fail the article in the first attempt if NPOV is not fixed, I did not litterally mean immediately. I am concerned with the quotes, they really seem to make the article off balance and written from the point of view of a Woman in Saudi Arabia. That is a concern and I think they need to be balanced or not quoted but the facts from them be included. Please don't be snotty about the second opinion, the good article assessment is meant to be very critical and honest. So editors that want to make snotty comments should just go fix the issues. Thanks.  JoeGazz  ▲  21:49, 22 October 2010 (UTC)

Non-reviewer comments[edit]

Thanks for the review. It is large, so I appreciate the time you put in it. I'll look at your suggestion in more depth later. (It's a beautful day, and I am going hiking....) Noloop (talk) 15:21, 16 October 2010 (UTC)

The youtube video is a reliable source for the opinion of the person who made and posted the video (the same, in this case). In this case, that happens to be the most prominent women's rights activist in Saudi Arabia. She made the video as a document. It's no different from the same person writing in a blog. If the author is a reliable (or notable) source, then the blog is acceptable. Noloop (talk) 16:22, 17 October 2010 (UTC)
You are using a rather unconventional source (youtube) to support two claims: that women are prohibited from driving, and that the prohibition is unenforced in the rural areas. You should use a more reliable secondary source when available, and later in the article it seems the King supported both claims himself. I don't think you need the youtube source for those two claims, you seem to have plenty to choose from. Aaron north (talk) 19:42, 17 October 2010 (UTC)
No, I'm fairly sure you can't use Youtube as a source. Aaroncrick TALK 08:42, 18 October 2010 (UTC)
Well, you can, as long as it meets WP:YOUTUBE. Aaroncrick TALK 08:51, 18 October 2010 (UTC)
I haven't looked at the video, but wouldn't a self-made video be a violation of WP:SELFPUB?Bless sins (talk) 01:27, 20 October 2010 (UTC)

Again I would like to point out issues with WP:NOR, WP:NPOV and some limited issues with WP:V as well. I'd appreciate if you could comment on them.

  • Using Qur'an verses to advance a certain position is a gross violation of both NPOV and NOR. Each verse in the Qur'an has several interpretations associated with it, and if it to be presented, all significant interpretations must be presented (per NPOV). But this article isn't about Islam, its about Saudi Arabia, so that is out of the scope of this article. Its best to remove the verses and replace them with Saudi laws that have instituted the discriminitory attitude. Its a violation of NOR because ultimately the editor is interpreting the Qur'an (a primary source). The interpretation fo a scripture can only be done by a reliable secondary source.
  • To a certain extent I agree with your comments about this article will always be more syumpathetic towards women because of the rality on the ground. However, if the sources used in the article are inherently biased towards one side, and these sources consitute the majority of the sources, then that presents a problem.
  • I've pointed out the WP:V issues. Since they're simple I'll go ahead and fix them myself.

Bless sins (talk) 14:56, 21 October 2010 (UTC)

The Koran verses don't advance any position and no interpretation of the Koran is provided by the article, or by any editor in any conversation In Talk. The verses are there to add a dimension (sort of like images), and it is a very relevant dimension according to every reliable source. Noloop (talk) 16:25, 21 October 2010 (UTC)


After seeing the 2nd opinion and giving some more thought to what Bless sins wrote, I think I am going to change my mind on NPOV and say we have a problem. The 2nd opinion also suggested failing the article now, but I'd rather give the editors a fair chance to fix the issues. (If the editors disagree with the assessment and do not want to change the article, they are free to ask for a reassessment after a fail). Aaron north (T/C) 01:53, 22 October 2010 (UTC)
It seems like we are all agreed that the basic verifiable facts on the ground do not have to be re-juggled to force a false balance, the facts are what they are, no matter that it may upset one side to tell the whole story. Aaron north (T/C) 01:53, 22 October 2010 (UTC)
I think the main (only?) issue is the use of the qur'an in the green comment boxes. I initially thought that use was fair, but I am now convinced it subtly paints this narrative that the qur'an reinforces a lack of women's rights. That seems to be contradicted by the "it's the culture, not the religion" quote near the beginning of the article. That doesn't mean that well-sourced analysis involving the impact of the qur'an on this subject isn't usable (obviously we cant completely ignore the religion, it does have an impact), but it may be too far to prominently highlight this point in the comment boxes. I believe this defect can most easily be cured by simply removing the verses. If that leaves too much white space, you could possibly replace them (with care, to again not upset the NPOV balance) with more "voices" participating in this debate. Alternatively, I guess you could try to include qur'an texts that seem to contradict this "qur'an reinforces a lack of women's rights" narrative, but the article would probably be more resistant to NPOV questions if you don't go down that route. If you have questions, comments, or disagree with any of this, please let me know. Aaron north (T/C) 01:53, 22 October 2010 (UTC)

Of course the Koran quotes "reinforce a lack of women's rights". The Koran states that husbands have the right to beat their wives, that women must cover (details open to debate) in public, that a woman's legal testimony is worth less than a man's, and that they inherit less than their brothers. That's not POV, that's the fact of the Koran. However, I don't know what you mean by a narrative about the Koran reinforcing a lack of rights: the Koran says what the Koran says, and what it says is historically fascinating, poetic, and completely relevant to the article. The saying "It's the culture not the religion" doesn't mean the Koran has no part in Saudi law. It is an Islamic nation. Noloop (talk) 02:32, 22 October 2010 (UTC)
Fair enough, and I would not object to neutrally reporting on all that within the context of this subject (I think you basically have in many places, actually), but to turn that argument around: the bible has a lot of passages regarding wives submitting to husbands. Granted, we do not adhere to religious teachings as strictly in the USA, but a sizable number of people still believe in all that. If a "Women's Rights in the USA" article highlighted the bible verses prominently in colorful boxes, it would look a bit off for NPOV. I have no problem with discussing the role the qur'an plays in this subject in a scholarly fashion, but ultimately the article is about women's rights in saudi arabia, not women's rights in Islam or in the qur'an. Aaron north (T/C) 02:44, 22 October 2010 (UTC)
Noloop said "The Koran states that husbands have the right to beat their wives".
Precisely why I consider the article so POV at the moment. Mainstream Muslim scholars, Saudi and non-Saudi, condemn domestic violence and interpret the Qur'an very differently than Noloop does. Are you familiar with the Rania al-Baz case, Noloop? (Aaron: she was a Sauid woman battered by her husband, and the husband was punished under Saudi law for his domestic violence) They all agree that the prophet Muhammad said "The best amongst you, are the best for their wives." NPOV would require we quote that as well. But that is going beyond the scope of this article.Bless sins (talk) 01:18, 23 October 2010 (UTC)
I didn't interpret the Koran at all. It says husbands may beat their wives. That is a literal fact about the Koran, not an interpretation. That fact is not, however, even mentioned in the article, so it's completely unclear what you're talking about when you say that's why you "consider the article so POV." You appear to be looking for excuses to oppose the article. Noloop (talk) 03:22, 25 October 2010 (UTC)
"It says husbands may beat their wives. That is a literal fact about the Koran, not an interpretation." Everything you 'deduce' from the Qur'an, is, by definition, an interpretation. On wikipedia, we may not use religious scriptures and say, look, this religious scripture says that. If such a practice was allowed an editor could say the Bible (1 Samuel 15:3) advocated genocide of the Amalekites (which is an opinion that must be left to scholars of the Bible, not wikipedians themselves).Bless sins (talk) 22:00, 29 November 2010 (UTC)

Regarding the quotes (other than qur'an verses) in the article, as I mentioned earlier, I am fine with using them, and (other than the last quote, as mentioned earlier) mostly fine with how they are used. Noloop's reasoning in an earlier section of this talk page gives a decent rationale, so I'll just copy/paste that down here to memorialize it within this GA Review page: (The quotes from Saudi women, also, do not endorse any particular view. There is a quote from a housewife saying women should cover her face, quotes from women saying the male guardian system is good, and there are quotes from rights activists. You're welcome to add a quote from, say, a cleric if you feel that balance is important. The article is about the Everywoman, so quotes giving their view are appropriate. There is a quote from an anonymous woman because it relates a perspective from the group this article is about. This article is about anonymous women. She is not making a factual statement, just giving a simple insight.) To me, the reason for the existence of the quotes in the article is the same reason we use images. This article doesn't naturally lend itself to relevant images, so these "voices" basically serve as the "images" of this article. Aaron north (T/C) 02:52, 22 October 2010 (UTC)

Women's rights in the US aren't based on the Bible. If they were, I wouldn't conclude that "Women's rights in the USA" couldn't be a Good Article because it quoted biblical passages about women's rights. Noloop (talk) 15:39, 22 October 2010 (UTC)
Other than Qur'an verses, if the quotes are relevant, I'm fine too.
But, how many quotes do we include in the article? Obviously a finite and reasonable amount. So, there will come a time when we will have to pick between quotes, and not all quotes will be included.
So, IMO, the quotes that should stay are those from notable figures (Saudi women, women's rights activists, government officials etc.), Saudi law itself etc. Also, the quotes retained should respect an NPOV balance, presenting both sides of the debate in due proportion.Bless sins (talk) 01:11, 23 October 2010 (UTC)

One example of blatant OR[edit]

I'm going to give one example of blatant OR in this article, one that Noloops seems to be defending.

There is a statement "The Qu'ran states that daughters should inherit half as much as sons".

The source at the end of the paragraph given says:

Islamic law provides for detailed and complex calculations of inheritance shares. Women may inherit from their father, mother, husband or children and, under certain conditions, from other family members. However, their share is generally smaller than that to which men are entitled. Women, particularly in rural areas, are often deprived of their entitled share as they are considered to be dependents of their fathers or husbands.

No mention of Qur'an, including any specific verse, nor any mention of daughters inheriting "half" as much. When I tried reverting that, Noloop reverted my edits here.

There is a link to [Quran 4:11], but interpreting the primary text of the Qur'an to promote a view (that daughters are to be given half as much as men) is a violation of NOR (WP:PRIMARY).

This is just one of the many examples of original research in this article.

However, I'd like Noloop to be more cooperative and/or familiarize him/herself mroe with WP:NOR.Bless sins (talk) 01:05, 23 October 2010 (UTC)

I didn't revert because I disagreed that something could be improved. I reverted because you deleted. There are other choices than just deleting anything you think is a problem. You can improve, for example, or flag it for others to improve. I've added a secondary source regarding inheritance. Noloop (talk) 02:08, 23 October 2010 (UTC)
The text in question seems to be (The Qu'ran states that daughters should inherit half as much as sons.) I looked into this, but the qur'an wasn't really vague, unclear, or required a lot of analysis. 4:11 of the Qur'an pretty clearly supports a smaller inheritance for daughters. I might argue that the statement which used the verse for support was a bit too simplified, that verse seems to apply only if there is no will. From reading more discussions about that verse, parents are free to will everything to their daughters according to the qur'an if their circumstances merit it (the son is rich, for example). If the statement was made more clear to say that the qur'an advises a half share for daughters "if the parents leave no will", then I do not see the OR here. If you prefer secondary sources instead of using the primary source, thats fine but I don't think it will lead to the deletion of that sentence because a quick cursory search revealed a lot of articles about the verse leading to that same conclusion. I assume noloop can find a good secondary source to support that sentence. Aaron north (T/C) 03:40, 24 October 2010 (UTC)
Likewise I could argue that 1 Samuel 15:2 shows the Bible advocated genocide against the Amalekites. (Note, I'm only saying that for the sake of the argument, I'm not trying to criticize the Bible). Do you now see the problem when wikipedians try to interpret religious scripture and insert their own conclusions into wikipedia as fact?
If you don't, we should take this to WP:NOR talk page.
I not only prefer, but demand secondary sources for the insertion of commentary on religious scripture. Wikipedians should not be interpreting any verse from any religious scripture. If they wish to use such a verse, they must find a secondary reliable source that uses it in a similar context.Bless sins (talk) 19:21, 26 October 2010 (UTC)

Which translation?[edit]

Currently the article quotes 4:34. The translation given is:

As to those women on whose part ye fear disloyalty and ill-conduct, admonish them (first), (Next), refuse to share their beds, (And last) beat them (lightly); but if they return to obedience, seek not against them Means (of annoyance): For Allah is Most High, great (above you all).

Yet there's an alternative translation.[1]

As for those women who bring about in you a fear of disloyalty, you shall first advise them. Then (if they continue), you may desert them in bed. Then, (if they continue), you may leave them. If they obey you, (however,) then you must not do any wrong against them. God is Most High, Supreme.

Granted the latter one is less popular than the former one, whose to say which one we quote? This problem arises because NoLoop picked the translation that seems to satisfy his/her view that "The Koran states that husbands have the right to beat their wives". On the other hand if a reliable source was to quote the Qur'an, we could quote the reliable source verbatim (and use the translation the reliable source uses).

All these complications arise because of OR. If the editors stick to only stating what reliable sources state (and not their own opinions), then we wouldn' have these problems.Bless sins (talk) 22:15, 29 November 2010 (UTC)

One example of POV[edit]

Here's an example of POV editing. Noloop uses this source for the following statement:

The inheritance share of women in Saudi is generally smaller than that to which men are entitled. The Qu'ran states that daughters should inherit half as much as sons

(The Qur'an matter is being discussed above).

The actual sentence says:

Despite inheritance laws that require that daughters receive only half the inheritance awarded to sons, Saudi women inherit a large portion of the kingdom's wealth.

Noloop seems to be presenting one POV only, while the source is providing both POVs in the exact same sentence.

The sentence before that notes:

Roughly 20-25 percent of business registrations in Saudi Arabia are by women.

And this is not the only case of POV editing. I would recommend Noloop to present all significant POVs more fairly.Bless sins (talk) 19:27, 26 October 2010 (UTC)

Regarding 18 Jan. 2011 edits[edit]


My suggestion is for you to read the sources you have regarding Eltahawy’s article and the material that is used to support this statement: “Women need their guardian's permission for: marriage and divorce; travel, if under 45; education; employment; opening a bank account; elective surgery, particularly when sexual in nature.”

First Eltahawy: She writes in the New York Times that “Despite being abducted and raped by seven men, a court in Saudi Arabia sentenced her to 90 lashes because she was in a car with an unrelated man before she was abducted. Saudi Arabia's ultra-orthodox interpretation of Islamic law preaches a strict segregation of the sexes.”

Clearly, and without reservation, Eltahawy states accurately the woman was sentenced to 90 lashes for being in a car with an unrelated man. This is khalwa (seclusion with an unrelated man), which is considered haram (sinful). Eltahawy then ventures the opinion that the woman was being punished for being raped. Please make the distinction between fact and opinion. Eltahawy is entitled to her opinion and her article is appropriate as a source for the purposes of this article. But the textbox is misleading and out of context.

Regarding employment: The Arab News, which is published in Saudi Arabia, reported, “For instance, in 2008 Prince Khaled Al-Faisal, the governor of Makkah, modified Article 160 of the Labor Law, which prohibited men and women from interacting in a business environment. The Labor Ministry also revised labor laws in 2008 in order to give women the choice to work. Women no longer require a male guardian’s approval to get or leave a job. In the same year, authorities also reversed a ban on women staying in hotels alone.” Here’s the link:

Regarding marriage, bank accounts, education, etc.: The Report of the Special Rapporteur on violence against women, its causes and consequences:MISSION TO SAUDI ARABIA. United Nations ( actually states that “legal guardianship of women by a male, is practised in varying degrees and encompasses major aspects of women’s lives. The system is said to emanate from social conventions, including the importance of protecting women, and from religious precepts on travel and marriage, although these requirements were arguably confined to particular situations.”

The report further elaborates: “While, according to law, women have the right to undergo any other medical operation, open a business, perform financial transactions, own property, inherit, and choose their education without a male guardian’s approval or presence - in practice the exercise of such rights can be arbitrarily restricted depending on the practice adopted by a particular institution or the understanding of the individual in charge.”

So the Special Rapporteur’s report actually says that Saudi women have legal rights (Sharia) to pursue an education, perform financial transactions, etc. without a male’ guardian’s approval, yet male guardianship is practiced in “varying degrees.”

The “Perpetual Minors” report by Human Rights Watch ( confirms the Special Rapporteur’s report by stating, “Women's and girls' access to education often depends on the good will of male guardians.”

In Asmaa Al-Mohamed’s article, "Saudi Women's Rights: Stuck at a Red Light", he writes of “overbearing” male guardians as noted in the sub-headline. The section implies abuses by male guardian, but not necessarily having rights over certain aspects of women’s lives.

If the male guardian lead paragraph in the Wiki article said something to the effect that “abuses” of male guardianship or even that male guardianship is practiced in varying degrees, then that is a more accurate statement. But to write that “Women need their guardian's permission” is inaccurate and misrepresents the sources the article cites. In other words, women may need a guardian’s permission to do certain things depending on the guardian. Then again, they may not need permission. Since there is no codified laws in Saudi Arabia and the law of the land is Sharia (which is open to interpretation), this article should not misrepresent male guardianship issues with black and white statements.

I also note that the statement in the Wiki article, “Guardianship requirements are not written law” undermines the first paragraph in the Male Guardianship section. The argument can be made if there is no written law, who says women needs a guardian’s permission? This paragraph should be cleaned up.

My objection to much of this article is the many blanket declarations based on reports written by either Westerners or articles that outline the nuances of Saudi culture and practices but are ignored in the Wiki article. The UN’s Special Rapporteur got it right. Male guardianship often results in “practice adopted by a particular institution or the understanding of the individual in charge.” There is no single definition of male guardianship, yet the Wiki article incorrectly implies there is.

Another source cited is L.M. Handrahan’s article in a Canadian Human Rights publication. Ms. Handrahan’s article is based on a November 2000 trip to Saudi Arabia. It was published in 2001. This article is outdated and pointless as a source given the significant changes in Saudi Arabia since 2004.

According to the Islamic website Submission (, here’s an authoritive statement on divorce:

"Under what conditions can a woman divorce her husband?

Whichever party chooses for divorce must obey the laws as aforesaid. Normally divorce is mutually decided by the couple. If the aforesaid laws are observed, there could be a situation where either of the spouse may not give their consent but if the arbitrators from both the families decide that divorce is the best solution for the estranged couple then they would, nevertheless go through divorce. The divorce laws are applicable to both man and woman (4:35 and 2:237 indicate this) except that there are certain additional laws which a divorced woman has to observe."

The following seem to be the only conditions where a believing women leaves her husband without observing the above laws. In fact, I think in this case even a formal divorce is not required under Quran. However if the law of the land requires a formal divorce then one must follow suit.

This statement regarding divorce boils down to this: Divorce should be a mutual decision by the couple. Male guardianship does not enter into it.

Regarding the marriage issue: There are conflicting schools of thought about whether a male guardian’s permission is required. But again, the issues lies with specific institutions and the good will of the guardian. Leicester17 (talk) 11:03, 18 January 2011 (UTC)

Mindbunny's lack of discussion[edit]

I'm puzzled why compelling evidence with cited sources were presented, but ignored, by Mindbunny over 18 January's changes. The law regarding a male guardian's permission for a woman seeking employment was repealed in 2008 (source provided above). The UN report specifically says that women have legal rights to pursue an education and conduct financial transactions, yet Mindbunny ignores those sources. This latest effort to restore inaccurate information and Eltahawy's non-factual statement is clear POV. I see an agenda here and would like to see an explanation. I've tweaked the lead paragraph of the Male Guardian section a bit to provide some accuracy, if not fairness, as a compromise and to engage in the spirit consensus, but I think it's necessary to address the misuse of sources here. Also please note that a new sentence in the Male Guardianship section contains an additional source (Reference 25) for support. Leicester17 (talk) 07:16, 19 January 2011 (UTC)

i've had a brief look at the history of those edits and the state of the Male Guardian section. It seems to me that Mindbunny's edits were made in WP:GOODFAITH. My suggestion is to associate at least one inline ref for each of the guardianship-required-or-not-required topics on which you and Mindbunny disagree regarding sourcing. At the moment there are 7 references bunched together, and i (and probably other editors) do not want to search through all 7 in order to find which ones justify what. For those particular rights (marriage and divorce?) that seem to be unreferenced, put {{citation needed}} there. If someone has read through and found a source that supports the claim, then s/he will replace the cn tag with the named ref.
Including the references on this talk page is OK, but improving the article requires putting them in place where they are useful and can be relatively easily checked by someone reading the article. Boud (talk) 09:46, 31 May 2011 (UTC)

List of 'prominent Saudi Women'[edit]

I transferred a list of Saudi women professionals out of Saudi Arabia to this article because it's too much detail for that article. Mindbunny reverted that transfer on the grounds of 'trivia' and not directly related to Women's rights. I'm putting it back and explaining my rational here. Although I wasn't happy originally when it was put into Saudi Arabia - clearly it was a POV push to show Saudi women's rights in a good light - I gave in because ultimately I thought it was interesting that despite the cultural/legal background these women have achieved these positions. (It is properly sourced, btw). I don't think it can be said that it is unrelated to women's rights. It does make a comment on how the rights of Women in Saudi may be changing. I don't think it's trivia either. Gven the parlous state of women's rights in the country as described by the article, it is noteworthy that there are women who have achieved seniority. It's a very interesting dichotomy. How can a woman be the head of a major opthamology dept and physician to the King, yet her major personal decisions in her life be decided by her nearest male relative? (I accept that there should be a sourced para introducing the list.) Please discuss further before reverting. DeCausa (talk) 14:07, 4 February 2011 (UTC)

First of all, did you read this article completely before adding that list? It seems unlikely, given the speed of your edits:
  • 23:12, 3 February 2011 (diff | hist) Saudi Arabia ‎ (unnecessary detail for lede - moved to main body)
  • 23:06, 3 February 2011 (diff | hist) Women's rights in Saudi Arabia ‎ (→Change: moved out of the Saudi arabia article)
  • 23:03, 3 February 2011 (diff | hist) Saudi Arabia ‎ (→Women in Saudi society: transferring to women's rights in Saudi Arabia)
  • 22:55, 3 February 2011 (diff | hist) Saudi Arabia
I also wonder if you've looked closely at the list. Some of the people on it don't live in Saudi Arabia.
Finally, have you looked at the recent peer reviews or GA nomination for this article? A common concern is that it is too long. Mindbunny (talk) 23:45, 4 February 2011 (UTC)
I can see that you've only just started editing and haven't yet done much, and may not be familiar with how things are done here. Before reverting you should explain why you think I'm wrong. You haven't done that, so I'm reverting you. Could you please answer the points I made above and discuss them before reverting. To answer your questions (which aren't relevant and don't deal with my points), yes I have read the article. I'm very familiar with all the Saudi articles and I've written most of the main Saudi Arabia article over the last couple of months, (it was previously very sanitized) which probably explains the "speed of my edits". Whether the individuals live in Saudi Arabia is not necessarily relevant, but if it was then only those individuals should be deleted. And yes, I am very familar with peer reviews and GA nominations. What is your concern about length? The length of this article isn't just about the piece I added. Your comment is meaningless as it stands. I notice a comment about your lack of discussion by another editor. If you continue to edit in wikipedia I suggest you review your approach. DeCausa (talk) 09:44, 5 February 2011 (UTC)

Again, summarized in one place, the reasons against your recent addition: 1) it is primarily a list that contributes little to the narrative of the article, 2) it is mostly trivia--little discussion or analysis is provided, 3) it is only indirectly related to the subject, 4) the article has received several criticisms for being too long from recent peer- and GA-reviews. 5) It conforms barely (if at all) with the style guideline on embedded lists (, 6) It is both POV and OR to argue that the list shows that women making "career progress". No reliable source makes that claim for this list. Mindbunny (talk) 03:49, 8 February 2011 (UTC)

From the recent Good Article review, still locatable on this Talk page: "The second issue I am not completely sure about is the sheer size of the article. I do believe that all major aspects of the subject are covered in depth, but is there irrelevant information that should be cut out? I'm having difficulty finding anything that should be removed, each section is closely related to the subject, and would be rather small articles if split off from this article. This is simply a very, very broad subject that has been covered in depth. On the other hand, it is 99k. Are we fine with calling this one of those rare articles that is acceptable to be this large, is there some irrelevant detail that adds nothing of value and should be removed, or should portions of this article be split off into smaller articles? ..." — Preceding unsigned comment added by Mindbunny (talkcontribs) 03:52, 8 February 2011 (UTC)
Thank you for properly replying to my first post. Dealing with your points: (1) I diasagree that it contributes little. The parts of the article are written in a rather polemical style and gives the impression of being unbalanced. I think it needs some text - but not necessarily this, I accept - to 'put the other side' and give it more balance. (2) I think 'trivia' is the wrong word. (I don't think it is trivial that in a country where women's rights are so limited, there are women who have these roles). Think the correct word, however, is 'anecdotal' in terms of the selection - see point 6 (3) I disagree strongly with this. How can it possibly be unrelated to women's rights? There is after all an economic rights section. These are examples of women who have these rights. The article isn't called 'Lack of Women's rights in Saudi Arabia'. (4) I agree the article is already too long. I think the main problem is that there is too much detail for an overview article. The Background section and the first part of the Change section are inappropriately detailed in the context of the rest of the article. I suggest the best approach is to fork, particularly the legal rights section. (5) It's not really a list, and probably should be edited down to a few examples (in non-list format), with the intro paragraph that I added. (6) This is your strongest point. The selection itself isn't supported by a source. By the way, I didn't write this, as I said before I merely transferred it out of the main Saudi article.
I suggest leaving it for a few days to see if there are any other comments before modifying or deleting. I think my main point is that there needs to be a short acknowledgment that there has been a degee of progress in careers (not enough obviously) in the change section. This is currently missing and gives a strong suggestion of lack of NPOV - given, for example, the ABC piece. DeCausa (talk) 11:08, 8 February 2011 (UTC)
Having thought about it further, and taking into account your comments, I've substntially shortened it and moved it to the employment section. I think we should leave it for a while to see if others comment on it. DeCausa (talk) 15:24, 8 February 2011 (UTC)

Removing material being dumped here from Saudi Arabia[edit]

This material should be removed: Saudi women are now seen developing professional careers as doctors, teachers and even business leaders, a process described by ABC News as "painfully slow".Prominent examples include Dr. Salwa Al-Hazzaa, head of the ophthalmology department at King Faisal Specialist Hospital in Riyadh (she had been King Fahd’s personal ophthalmologist) and Lubna Olayan, named by Forbes and Time as one of the world's most influential businesswomen.

  • It begins with weasel words.
  • It is redundant, repeating what is said elsewhere, particularly in the Change section (Lubna Olayan is described word-for-word in the same way)
  • It misrepresents sources. The source for Salwa Al-Hazzaa doesn't say she had been King Fahd’s personal ophthalmologist
  • According to the Good Article review on this Talk page, the article is too long and needs to be trimmed.
  • The main explanation Decausa has given for adding it here is that he didn't want it in Saudi Arabia and needed some place else to stick it.[2]. Silly reason. Mindbunny (talk) 17:02, 22 February 2011 (UTC)
Firstly, this isn't the material. It's different material, albeit making the same point. Which suggests it's the point and not the material you object to: In answer to your comments:
  • They are not weasel words, they are taken directly from the source.
  • Lubna Olayan is used in a different way later - not as an example of Women's careers
  • Agreed: reference to Salwa Al-Hazzaa being King Fahd’s personal ophthalmologist can be removed
  • The main point from the review is that the article has an NPOV proble. Text likes this addresses this ctiticism
  • This is not the text (or remotely lie it) transferred from the Saudi Arabia article.

DeCausa (talk) 17:10, 22 February 2011 (UTC)

They meet the definition of weasel words.
The contexts for are identical: Change. The wording in the Change section is "Forbes and Time magazines have named Lubna Olayan one of the world's most influential women.[64] " The wording you added to the employment section is "....Lubna Olayan, named by Forbes and Time as one of the world's most influential businesswomen.[64]" You even copied the reference.
The main concern with POV had to do with the "quoteboxes" or whatever the colored excerpts on the sides are called. The text you added has nothing to do with that, and is redundant anyway. Mindbunny (talk) 17:15, 22 February 2011 (UTC)
Obviously, the material has lacked consensus since the moment you added it. You are being tendentious, violating BRD, and edit warring. Please revert yourself. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Mindbunny (talkcontribs) 17:17, 22 February 2011 (UTC)
How can you say it lacked consensus? I added this material (which is not the material you say I "dumped" and which we previously had the disagreement over) on 8 February and posted a commentary here explaining it.1 Over the last 2 weeks 10 editors (I think) including yourself have edited the page (let alone those who just viewed it). None, including you (i.e. your first edit in that period), sought to remove the text. In fact one of the editors tweaked the wording, thereby giving it positive "approval". None put any comment in this talk section. The bigger question, given that it is completely different text albeit the same point, is why do you object to it so strongly to the point. Clearly it is relevant that women are moving into these professional areas, and it is not a point made properly elsewhere in the article. Look, I recognise that you've significantly improved this article over the last 8 months, but what does spoil it is the polemical appearance and impresion of lack of NPOV it has. This was probably the biggest comment from the review - and it wasn't just the userboxes. It needs to include these sort of points to answer the criticism. Try to be a little bit more dispassionate. Btw, I'll remove the Al-Hazzaa ref to Fahd. DeCausa (talk) 17:41, 22 February 2011 (UTC)
I can say it lacks consensus because I object to it, and I've objected to it since the day you added it. Since we are the only two regular editors of this article, the change you're trying to make therefore lacks consensus. I didn't immediately revert it after I was unblocked because that's bad form, and because the unblocking admin was explicit: " I cannot promise I'll block either of you for the first revert you make, but I can't promise that another admin won't. In other words, don't play the system." My failure to immediately revert you after being unblocked doesn't signal consensus. The admin was also explicit that he had misapprehended the situation, and you are the one violating the Bold/Revert/Discuss guideline. So please stop that. Revert your own revert, and discuss here first. Thank you. Mindbunny (talk) 18:25, 22 February 2011 (UTC)
I added it on the 8th, and you're only now objecting to it. It's completely different to the material you say I "dumped" here. It's not even solely "my material" since someone else has changed it since I put it in here. You've objected to two sets of material, both very different but which make a similar underlying point. So your objection is unlikely unlikely to be the material itself and more likely to be the underlying point. Could you explain why exactly you object to the underlying point being made in the article? If you could answer that maybe we can find some middle ground. And by the way, I don't consider myself a regular editor of this article. DeCausa (talk) 18:35, 22 February 2011 (UTC)
Why don't you read what I've said, repeatedly. I don't object to the point. The point is good. The point is already made elsewhere, in the case of Lubna Olayan, using the exact same example and language. In an article that needs trimming, the material you added is redundant. Not surprising, since your initial reason for coming to this article was that you needed someplace to dump some material from another article. Mindbunny (talk) 00:36, 24 February 2011 (UTC)
I have read what you've said but the reason you are repeating it is you haven't understood my point. I'll spell it out for you. The point being made in the material I added is that there is some improvement in the economic/career position of women which is evidenced by certain named women establishing prominent careers for themselves in the professions and business. Olayan is one of the examples of this development. This is not the point being made in the Change section where Olayan is mentioned. This is the text:
"Lubna Olayan, the CEO of Olayan Financing Company, is a well-known advocate for women's rights. She was the first woman to address a mixed-gender business audience in Saudi Arabia, speaking at the Jeddah Economic Forum in 2004. She used the occasion to advocate for economic equality: 'My vision is of a country with a prosperous and diversified economy in which any Saudi citizen, irrespective of gender who is serious about finding employment, can find a job in the field for which he or she is best qualified, leading to a thriving middle class and in which all Saudi citizens, residents or visitors to the country feel safe and can live in an atmosphere where mutual respect and tolerance exist among all, regardless of their social class, religion or gender.' Forbes and Time magazines have named Lubna Olayan one of the world's most influential women."
So this text is about Olayan's aspirations for women's economic rights. The passage before this is about Nora Alyousif's aspirations for reform. The passage after it is about Wajeha al-Huwaider's views. The context of mentioning Olayan is about women asking for reform. The references to Forbes/her achievements etc are just there to introduce HER. It's not a general point that women's careers have made some progress. For all the reader knows, she might be the ONLY woman who has made any progress. Can I spell it out any more explicitly than that? It's a different point than the one the material I added makes.
Therefore, I can only conclude your objection is to making the point that there has been some progress for women's professional careers. Please explain why that is. DeCausa (talk) 10:18, 24 February 2011 (UTC)

The point that career progress is being made slowly is found... Traditionally, women have been excluded from studying engineering, pharmacy, architecture, and law.[67][68] This has changed moderately in recent years as nearly 60% of all Saudi university students are female. Some fields, such as law and pharmacy, are beginning to open up for women.

The King Abdullah University of Science and Technology, which opened in September 2009, is Saudi Arabia's first coeducational campus where men and women study alongside each other. Women are allowed to attend classes with men, may drive on campus, and are not required to veil themselves. In its inaugural year, 15% of the students were female, all of whom had studied at foreign universities.

The government under King Abdullah is regarded as moderately progressive. It has opened the country's first co-educational university, appointed the first female cabinet member, and prohibited domestic violence. Gender segregation has relaxed, although it is still the norm. Critics say the reform is far too slow, and often more symbolic than substantive.

Some of the recently appointed female advisors to parliament (shurah) believe slow reform is effective. According to Dr. Nora Alyousif, "The Saudi leadership is working hard on reform and supporting women … Seventy years ago we were completely isolated from the world. The changes which are taking place are unmistakable, and we have finally started opening up."[1]

If the factoid about Olayan isn't relevant to career progress, it doesn't belong in the text you just added about career progress. The text you added also employs weasel words, POV ("prominent") and has a weak source--in an article that is already too long. It lacks consensus, and you should not be edit warring to get it into the article. Mindbunny (talk) 15:17, 24 February 2011 (UTC)

Different point again. The point I added is about women reaching the top in their field. Not about about undergradautes etc. Your comment about the "factoid" doesn't make sense. You probably need to re-word it before it can be understood. I'm not edit-warring. Your the only person that doesn't like what I've added. You might want to check out WP:OWN. DeCausa (talk) 16:20, 24 February 2011 (UTC)
The source, ABC News, says absolutely nothing about women reaching the top in their field. It says something about a slow opening up of professions, which is already mentioned in the article more than once. The main gist of the source is about slow progress in all aspects of society, not employment in particular. The factoid I referred to is that Olayan was recognized by Time and Forbes. You copied it from another part of the article, so now it is there twice unnecessarily. You are violating BRD. Mindbunny (talk) 17:12, 24 February 2011 (UTC)
Too be honest, I rushed my last response: by "reaching the top of their field" I meant actually having a professional career. The text you quoted is about education. Just because someone gets a degree in law doesn't mean that they will be able to develop a career in it in saudi Arabia. So neither the text around Olayan nor that text covers this point. So it is not redundant. The "factoid" is repeated because it's the first time Olayan is mentioned in the article. I agree repeating it a second time is unnecessary and so should be removed from kits second mention. I won't revert your edit at this time, but invite you to agree to third party dispute resolution. Do you agree? If so, we just need to a line or 2 sumarising the dispute. DeCausa (talk) 18:09, 24 February 2011 (UTC)

Hatoon al-Fassi's work[edit]

i've added the main points of what i could find of Hatoon al-Fassi's thesis to the background and lead. She's a Saudi historian (forbidden from teaching since 2001 but remaining a faculty member, even becoming an assistant professor in 2008) and her points seem quite central to this article. See her article for refs. Boud (talk) 22:09, 30 May 2011 (UTC)

I removed this. First, it's the work of a single person, so putting it in the lead seems like using the article just to promote her work. Second, the cited work isn't about women's rights in Saudi Arabia, but about women in the ancient history of the Saudi peninsula. That's not directly related to the topic of the article. Mindbunny (talk) 00:56, 31 May 2011 (UTC)
It's the work of a Saudi Arabian historian, i.e. by someone who uses artifact (archaeology)s (and, i presume other historical methods) to gain encyclopedic knowledge, and AFAIK nobody has contradicted her. Putting the POVs of Saudi Arabian historians in the body and briefly in the lead seems to me quite justified in an article about a Saudi Arabian sociological subject. Moreover, putting the POVs of Saudi Arabian women historians in the body and briefly in the lead seems to me quite justified in an article about a Saudi Arabian women-related sociological subject.
On the second point: the present-day status of some sociological phenomenon almost always has historical roots. Surely a background section on a sociological topic should mention some history? The status of the article prior to my edits en:Women's_rights_in_Saudi_Arabia?diff=431723886&oldid=431257026 en:Women's_rights_in_Saudi_Arabia?diff=431724172&oldid=431723886 and following your reverts suggests that present-day women's rights in Saudi Arabia have some historical roots but not much. Please read the online reference that i included. You will find, e.g. a summary by the journalist, "She also suggests some Saudi restrictions on women may have their origins in Greco-Roman traditions." So i do not understand "That's not directly related to the topic of the article". Boud (talk) 09:14, 31 May 2011 (UTC)
Some comments off the top of my head. Your proposal is to put the work of a single historian in the lead, and in a prominent place in the first section. That's different from the work of " Saudi Arabian historians". It also seems to be a historian who is arguing for a non-consensus view (otherwise why attribute it specifically and uniquely to her?). I agree the article should mention history briefly in order to provide the reader with background. This is essential for communicating cultural differences regarding non-Western cultures. The consensus view is that the immediate influences on women's rights are Islam and tribal custom. Delving into non-consensus details of ancient history doesn't seem right. The article already greatly exceeds guidelines for maximum length. This is important. During a recent review, one of the complaints was that it was too long. It seems to me a new article, History of Women's Rights in Arabia would be a better place for Hatoon al-Fassi's thesis. Mindbunny (talk) 20:10, 31 May 2011 (UTC)

Punishing a woman for rape[edit]

Again, someone is trying to delete the quotebox by Mona Eltahway, which asks "What kind of God would punish a woman for rape?" Again, it is an anon IP that isn't discussing the concern in Talk before making the deletion more than once. I'm starting to lean toward removing it, because it is a magnet for vandalism. But, that rewards the vandalism.....

THe logic for including it.... The blue textboxes represent an overview of different perspectives. A conservative Saudi housewife, Muhammad, an activist....all are represented. Eltahway is just one voice. She is important to the article because she is a notable Muslim feminist (these are hard to find).

When this particular quote has been discussed (rare, relative to its deletion rate), the objection is always that the interpretation of the event is wrong. That's irrelevant and POV. We don't delete perspectives from Wikipedia because some editors disagree with them. Mindbunny (talk) 14:40, 6 June 2011 (UTC)

Although, on the face of it, you selected the various texts on the basis of "different perspectives", I think they are a mistake:
Firstly, it gives an unencyclopedic feel to the piece. Highlighting key texts in that way if they are themselves of fundamental importance may be appropriate in some cases: that argument could work for some of the Qu'ran quotes, for instance. However, dotting the article with the number that you have somewhat gives the feel of tabloid headlines. The nature of the Eltahway quote, in particular, reinforces that impression.
Secondly, you say you've selected them to give different perspectives. How is the relative significance of each been assessed in order to ensure NPOV? In other words, why that number of quotes "sympathetic" to the Saudi position, why that number from the Qu'ran, and why that number that are unsymapthetic? The selection of quotes to be given that sort of prominence is a form of OR, unless they have been pre-selected in some way by a secondary source. How do you know you've got the balance right and what is the correct balance anyway? They attracted a fair amount criticism (probably the major criticism) in the GAR. Whether it is right that some of the quotes are misused, unfair etc is a separate question. But presenting them in this way inevitably exposes the article unnecessarily to that sort of criticism.
Thirdly, leading on from the above point, my view is that the quote selection isn't balanced and too strongly signals a POV hostile to the Saudi position. Whilst there are quotes from the Qu'ran and from traditionalist views supportive of the Saudi position, there is only one quote - that from al-Humaydi - which would resonate with a Western readership as being actually supportive. On the other hand, the Eltahway is highly visible and highly provacative and, regardless of the existence of the other quotes editorialises the article. But that's just my reaction and I mention it really only as an illustration of the problem outlined in my second point above.
DeCausa (talk) 15:41, 6 June 2011 (UTC)
Are you arguing that an overview of perspectives is inherently biased? I don't see why it is different from a lead, or any other editorial element. It seems to me that most of your points criticizing the approach in general (the "secondly" paragraph, above), if valid, would apply to writing any article on Wikipedia. We choose the quotes by thinking about what is and is not fair, balance and neutral. Also, it seems to me the quotes by Muhammad and the housewife ought to be considered sympathetic to the culture. And, the quote by the journalist is not anti-culture, but merely giving insight into how the customs affect working life. Mindbunny (talk) 04:55, 7 June 2011 (UTC)

Western Perspective[edit]

I no longer make edits on this article, mostly because some people have taken ownership and have deleted/changed more objective encyclopedic entries and corrections to suit their own perspective of women's rights in Saudi Arabia. The continuing edit wars on this article point to a critical problem with non-Arabs/non-Muslims contributing (please accept my apologies in advance to any Arab/Muslims who contributed to this article) to this article. A thorough read of this article indicates that the bulk of the entries are from people who have little knowledge of the subject matter. Saudi women who have read this article express dismay over the inaccuracies and Western perspective. Among the 140 or so sources cited in this article, I count about seven or eight from Saudis and two or three from Saudi publications, all in English. The great debate among Saudis about women's rights in Saudi Arabia is in the Arabic-language press, yet we see nothing here about that debate.

One example of the Western viewpoint is the section on "breast milk sons." This fatwa from a scholar with little remaining credibility in Saudi Arabia was never taken seriously by Saudis and dismissed as bizarre. Yet the incident earns a section in the article for no credible reason other that its bizarreness. It doesn't add anything to Saudi women's rights. The fact that one or two news reports quoting a women's driving activist doesn't make it worthy of an entire section.

A more important case in point is this odd edit war over the Mona Eltahway quote (Punishing a woman for rape). The quote is inflammatory and out of context of what Eltahway actually wrote in her opinion piece. But more importantly is the fact that no woman was punished for rape, but for a separate offense. So at the every least the quote box is misleading. My understanding it's there because it provides a different perspective and is provocative. Well, if it provides a different perspective, how about one from a Saudi? The argument from Mindbunny is that Eltahway is a legitimate source because she is a Muslim feminist and apparently Muslim feminists are hard to find. Actually, Eltahway is a feminist who happens to be Muslim. She fights for Muslim women's causes, which is all fine and good, but she speaks to the Western narrative, not the Saudi perspective. Her feminism ignores Islamic principles, which few Saudi women are willing to accept. There are a great many Saudi Islamic feminists and they are not at all difficult to find. Saudi Women Revolution and My Baladi Campaign (My Country) are just two groups who are Saudi and have strong Islamic feminists and even a few Western-oriented feminists among them.

Other Saudi feminists who advocate for women's rights within the context of Islam are Marwa Al-Saleh, Rasha Alduwaisi, Rima Abdullah and Sabria Jawhar. These women are easily accessible and their views on Saudi women's rights are available online. Yet here we are giving Eltahway, an Egyptian feminist living in the U.S., far more attention. Wajeha Al-Huwaider is Saudi and she fights the good fight for Saudi women's rights. But she also speaks to a Western audience. Saudi women, including those I have named above, reject her advocacy because it's a Western model, not Islamic. Hatoon Al-Fassi, who is discussed above, is far more representative as a Saudi feminist than Eltahway or Al-Huwaider. If it's so difficult to find Islamic feminists to speak for Saudi Arabia, why not non-Saudi Muslim advocacy groups or feminists who have a better understanding and have viewpoints that are consistent by Saudi women's Islamic values? Frankly, this article reeks of Western feminist advocacy with only a cursory nod to Islamic feminists.

By writing an article that states facts and opinions from the Western feminist perspective, you ignore the true battle for women's rights in Saudi Arabia, and that is the battle for their rights as women in Islam. Leicester17 (talk) —Preceding undated comment added 12:00, 9 August 2011 (UTC).

I removed the Mona Eltahway quote-box. I don't agree with your analysis, but I have to admit that the quote-box attracts a lot of criticism (and vandalism). I wish at least one of the editors objecting to it had just done an RFC or other expected, dispute-resolution process, rather than just deleting it over and over. It's also a bit odd to read complaints about a lack of Muslim women in the article, while objecting to Eltahway, who is a Muslim woman in the article. Noloop (talk) 16:36, 27 August 2011 (UTC)
Leicester17: the issues you raise are valid, and to some extent discussed in a general sense at this discussion of demographic bias in the English language Wikipedia. More specifically, these are the practical problems i see:
  • This article is about 100 kbytes long - it is not easy to add new material without compressing other material, or splitting off some sections to subarticles/related articles.
  • It is probably not easy to find online English language sources for Saudi feminists' analyses.
  • The overall viewpoint about the topic risks counting as synthesis by Wikipedians unless it is possible to summarise content - in an NPOV way without adding one's own ideas - of other Wikipedia articles, that can be NPOV'd and sourced and discussed on their own talk pages, limiting each topic to something small enough to have some chance of achieving consensus.
So here's my suggestion:
  • Expand the Hatoon al-Fassi article and those of other Saudi feminists.
  • Create the Saudi Women Revolution and My Baladi campaign (My Country) articles if you think you can find enough sources. Arabic language sources can be used to some extent, but please use common sense and see the non-English source guideline. This recommends adding translations in the "ref" reference details. It would be good to have actively involved bilingual Arabic-English Wikipedians who can verify the validity and relevance of the translations and discuss things on the talk page.
After pages like these (e.g. see also Mindbunny's suggestion of creating an article on the history of women's rights in Saudi Arabia) become stable, it should become obvious and less controversial to consense on what changes need to be made to this article. I would be surprised if anyone editing this article would object to you expanding Hatoon al-Fassi or creating other relevant articles. So far, the main expansion of Hatoon al-Fassi apart from my own contributions seems to be about ... al-Fassi's male ancestry. Which is a bit ironical for an article about a feminist. Her feminist research is surely more important than her male ancestry! But someone/people has/have to do the editing work of adding the sourced material. Boud (talk) 18:39, 16 January 2012 (UTC)

slow down[edit]

This article uses the refernce style of giving the citation once, and then referring to it by keyword later. That means if you delete the full citation, wherever it may occur, all the subsequent references get "orphaned." At this point, I'm a little confused by the state of the article, as FormerIP added some refs (some of which had sources already in the article) and deleted at least one other (ASMAA).

The King just announced that women will more voting and candidacy rights in the future (but not now), so that part needs to be updated. But, please go slowly, so changes can be evaluated by others. Also, there is no reason to be deleting the Koran quotes, while simultaneously updating the section on voting rights. Please discuss major changes--especially major deletions and removal of sources. Noloop (talk) 16:39, 25 September 2011 (UTC)

I'm not sure I actually orphaned any refs, but it would be easier to fix that than go back and do all that editing again. So that's what I'll do if a bot doesn't get there first.
The Koran quote - apart from being a depreciated style, didn't actually have anything to do with the section. It was about inheritance rights. --FormerIP (talk) 16:46, 25 September 2011 (UTC)
You deleted a quote on male guardianship from the section on male guardianship, and a quote on inheritance rights from the section on legal rights including family law. In any case, if you think the quote doesn't fit in the section, move it to a better section rather than deleting it. I realize quoting the Koran is not "standard." Norms are not absolutes. Noloop (talk) 17:08, 25 September 2011 (UTC)
If you want quotes all over the article, you are entitled to edit it. Please stop mass reverting. I've put the box back in the section it relates to. I don't wish to seem unfriendly but I don't have time for this pettiness. If you carry on I'll take it to ANI. --FormerIP (talk) 17:28, 25 September 2011 (UTC)
Take what to ANI? You are violating policy by editing without consensus. If you don't want "mass reverting" you should stop "mass adding" without consensus. Noloop (talk) 18:42, 25 September 2011 (UTC)
I reverted this because it is just wrong: " Women, as of September 25, 2011, were granted the right to vote and to serve on many political councils" I reverted the deletion of the Koran's quote on male guardians. I reverted other changes that were redundant with info elsewhere in the article. There is some info that needs to be added regarding women's participation in politics. Why don't we discuss the best way to do that? Noloop (talk) 18:48, 25 September 2011 (UTC)
You need to identify and fix what you think is wrong, not just mass revert changes to your article. The edit you're talking about wasn't even mine. I've posted an ANI. --FormerIP (talk) 19:00, 25 September 2011 (UTC)
It is not "my" article. I did fix what was wrong: the deletion of the Koran on male guardianship, the deletion of the quote on inheritance, the deletion of a reference. What we both need to do is discuss proposed changes. You're not doing that. Noloop (talk) 19:12, 25 September 2011 (UTC)

The quotes of the Koran are part of the consensus version of this article. They have been in it for over a year. Please use the Talk page to discuss dramatic changes to the article. Noloop (talk) 23:22, 27 September 2011 (UTC)

Consensus can change. The fact that multiple users are removing them now is evidence that there is not consensus to keep them. There's a reason we have Template:Religious text primary - it's because we cannot analyze primary religious texts in this way. If Saudi law really is influenced by these verses, you should have no problem finding plenty of reliable sources that say so. –Roscelese (talkcontribs) 04:59, 28 September 2011 (UTC)
The only user removing all of them is you. Consensus changes by discussion, not by mass deletion before making a single comment in Talk. Nobody is analyzing any religious text. There is no analysis of any religious text in the article. The article contains multiple sources stating that women's rights in Saudi Arabia come from the Koran. The Koran is the constitution of Saudi Arabia. It is an Islamic state. Quoting the Koran in an article about rights in Saudi Arabia is like quoting the US Constitution in an article about rights in the US. You don't appear to have actually read the entire, or even majority, of the article. Noloop (talk) 16:49, 28 September 2011 (UTC)
That's nice. Would you care to provide sources stating that these verses are the basis for laws? To choose an example at random, I did a few cursory searches on Quran 4:34/guardians/mahrams in relation to Saudi Arabia. If we are to apply the same standard we use for the U.S. constitution, I should have no trouble finding reliable sources which tell me that Saudi Arabia's law is based on this verse. But... –Roscelese (talkcontribs) 19:46, 28 September 2011 (UTC)
See Legal system of Saudi Arabia. There is no codified law in Saudi Arabia, and no judicial precedent. Judges are supposed to consult six medieval texts from the Hanbali school before ruling whether the case violates Sharia law and determining an appropriate punishment, so essentially yes, the Quran is like their Constitution.AerobicFox (talk) 20:46, 28 September 2011 (UTC)
So why did a search for sources connecting the verse to the legal situation fail to turn up anything? It's very easy to turn up sources that say Saudi law requires a woman to travel with a mahram, so if it's so obvious that this law is directly based on that Quranic verse, why don't any sources say so? –Roscelese (talkcontribs) 21:36, 28 September 2011 (UTC)
I will explain what "uncodified" means. Uncodified = Saudi Arabia has no written laws. Please read what their legal system is—which is completely unique in the entire Muslim world— before saying something ridiculous like "It should be easy to look up their laws". When sources write or speak about the customs in Saudi Arabia, they explain it to outsiders in terms of "laws" so they are not confused by their legal system which consists entirely of a judge looking at the Qu'ran, Sunnah, and Ijma, and then making their own decision on whether that person has violated Sharia, and then decide the appropriate punishment.AerobicFox (talk) 22:09, 28 September 2011 (UTC)
  • Article 1 The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is a sovereign Arab Islamic state with Islam as its religion; Allah's Book and the Sunnah of His Prophet, Allah's prayers and peace be upon him, are its constitution...
  • Article 5 ...Rule passes to the sons of the founding King, Abd al-Aziz Bin Abd al-Rahman al-Faysal Al Sa'ud, and to their children's children. The most upright among them is to receive allegiance in accordance with the principles of the Holy Koran and the Tradition of the Venerable Prophet.
  • Article 7 Government in Saudi Arabia derives power from the Holy Koran and the Prophet's tradition.
  • Article 23 The state protects Islam; it implements its Shari'ah; it orders people to do right and shun evil; it fulfills the duty regarding Allah's call.
  • Article 45 The source of the deliverance of fatwa in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia are Allah's Book and the Sunnah of His Messenger.
  • Article 48 The courts will apply the rules of the Islamic Shari'ah in the cases that are brought before them, in accordance with what is indicated in the Book and the Sunnah, and statutes decreed by the Ruler which do not contradict the Book or the Sunnah.

...and so on [3]. Noloop (talk) 23:12, 28 September 2011 (UTC)

  • "Most Saudis take pride in their legal system, or at least in the fact that it can claim to be purely Islamic. The kingdom is the only state to hold the Koran as its constitution, and the only one where judges are trained solely in the sharia or Islamic jurisprudence." etcAerobicFox (talk) 23:18, 28 September 2011 (UTC)
This is all very nice, but it's irrelevant. If we were writing about law in the United States, we wouldn't say that the U.S. Constitution applied to a specific case without a source that said so - eg. we cannot just quote Article Six to say that the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo is the supreme law of the land. Why should we treat Saudi Arabia differently? –Roscelese (talkcontribs) 04:57, 29 September 2011 (UTC)
The quotes just provide background, and are relevant items of interest. Like images. Would you object to images that were photographs of an actual Koran? I'm not sure what you mean when you say they are applied to a specific case. We aren't saying "So-and-so's action violated verse x of the Koran." The only statements like that are sourced. The quotes are applied to the topic as a whole. Noloop (talk) 22:32, 29 September 2011 (UTC)
There are any number of other things that could be "background" or "interesting" - that's why we require secondary sources to show a connection, ie. that this verse has been applied as law in Saudi Arabia. And yes, the images would also be a problem unless the verses depicted were shown to be related - why would their being images make things different? –Roscelese (talkcontribs) 03:10, 1 October 2011 (UTC)
You've already been given sources explaining how the verses are applied as law. They are the constitution. The article is full of sourced statements that rights in Saudi Arabia come from the Koran. I really wonder if you've read the article. Noloop (talk) 03:46, 1 October 2011 (UTC)
That's very nice, but I've already explained why we can't go about applying general principles to specific cases without sources that do so. I used the example of the U.S. Constitution, remember? –Roscelese (talkcontribs) 04:33, 1 October 2011 (UTC)
Judges apply the law largely arbitrarily however as there is no judicial precedent in Saudi Arabia. To say Judge X cited this passage from the Koran to support Y would be meaningless since their interpretation has no bearing on the interpretation by other judges. Many of these passages on their face seem highly relevant, for example the one given at the top of the guardian section, do you have individual qualms with passages which would probably be more helpful to discuss.AerobicFox (talk) 13:38, 1 October 2011 (UTC)
Your comment that the passages "seem" relevant is exactly the problem. If we have to guess which passages are relevant, we shouldn't be including any. My problem is with any passage where no source can be found to support its application as law in Saudi Arabia. Doesn't have to be binding precedent - just a source that shows that this passage is relevant to the article. –Roscelese (talkcontribs) 15:35, 1 October 2011 (UTC)
At this point, you are being deliberately obtuse and engaging in pedantic, childish wikilawyering. The article doesn't apply general principles to specific cases. Nobody but you has claimed that it does, and you have given no examples. Reliable sources cited in the article apply the law to specific cases. The source supporting the general application of Koran as law is virtually every source that points out the Koran is the constitution. Do you need a source telling you that a constitution is applied as law in a country? Enough of this pedantic WP:IDIDNTHEARTHAT Noloop (talk) 16:51, 1 October 2011 (UTC)
"You are putting forward an argument with which I disagree" =/= "You are perpetuating a dispute by sticking to an unsupportable allegation or viewpoint long after the consensus of the community has rejected it." I've made a section at NORN and I hope you will contribute your opinion. –Roscelese (talkcontribs) 05:13, 2 October 2011 (UTC)

POV in the lede[edit]

The lede comes off as an apologetic for the gender discrimination ( I use that term in the general sense, not as a value judgement) in Saudi Arabia. The first bit about historyical context is fine, and the next bit stating the conditions is fine, but then only one viewpoint is represented, that of Saudi women who do not want radical change. This seems a bit slanted. Why not represent both viewpoints, or simply say "Saudi women hold different opinions on the extent, nature, and speed of change to traditional gender-based limitations" or something like that. To focus solely on the traditional viewpoint, especially in the lede, seems decidedly POV, even if wholly unintentionally so. I don't have enough info/knowledge of the subject to suggest references, etc, but am just saying how it reads to the common reader. (talk) 22:13, 26 September 2011 (UTC)

Agree that the lead doesn't sum up the end of the article very well, which talks about criticism of the status quo. If you want to summarize the "Change" section and the "Western perspectives" section, go for it. You should know that this article will probably always really provoke someone. If you look thru this Talk page, you find a lot of compaints that there is too much criticism of Saudi Arabia and not enough development of the Saudi traditional viewpoint. There is also more info about criticism in the "Background" section. Noloop (talk) 22:19, 26 September 2011 (UTC)
Yeah, I skimmed through the Talk, and have no problem with the rest of the article, the lede just seems lopsided. Given the volatility, I didn't want to make wholesale changes without addressing it here. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 13:50, 28 September 2011 (UTC)
Noloop: and with good reason. One would hope that an article on women in Saudi Arabia would include predominantly the viewpoints on women in Saudi Arabia. Would Saudis be quoted on articles on women in the United States?Bless sins (talk) 18:11, 5 December 2011 (UTC)

2011 & Driving[edit]

We might want to dedicate a section or at least a paragraph of the change section to events in 2011. The problem is that this article already exceeds the recommended maximum. I wonder if spinning off the right to drive into its own article would be a good idea. It seems a little too specific for its own article, but I'm concerned about bloating this one. Noloop (talk) 23:52, 28 September 2011 (UTC)

No, I think you're quite right that women and driving in Saudi Arabia would be an excellent article topic. –Roscelese (talkcontribs) 05:05, 29 September 2011 (UTC)
Done. women to drive movement. Boud (talk) 18:40, 16 January 2012 (UTC)

Terrible compulsion[edit]

I have a terrible compulsion to violate WP:POINT by blanking this article. Still-24-45-42-125 (talk) 21:57, 14 August 2012 (UTC)

Editors looking for useful editing: much discussion about KSA, little about Syria... ?[edit]

For people wishing to contribute some editing about a related subject, on which many diverse groups (governments, religion-associated opposition groups) have different vested interests and about which many ordinary, independent citizens of this planet may have a genuine interest, have a look at the box at the bottom of the article.

Women's rights in Syria is a red link right now 00:13, 5 November 2012 (UTC). Human rights in Syria, which should have a short summary section of Women's rights in Syria, seems to have just one sentence in the lead/introduction, and one word and a sentence in the History section (with an Amnesty International source which is a... dead link). So women's rights in Syria don't even have their own subsection in the human rights in Syria article ... so far.

What is women's historical, recent and present situation in Syria? The article is waiting to be started. Remember to avoid writing about "the present" in a way that will become out-of-date - use past tense, or if necessary, the {{As of|2012|11}} construction (see Template:As of for details). Boud (talk) 00:13, 5 November 2012 (UTC)

Segregation in restaurants[edit]

I made the changes [4] here as the section was fairly confusing before. It referred to a womens section whereas according to our article, are rare (women are not admitted when not accompanied by a mahram). While doing this, I noticed that one of the sources actually says single women are admitted to the families section so have changed our wording to reflect this. Actually, neither of the sources actually say women not accompanied by a mahram are not admitted although I suspect from what I've read in non RS and from my understanding of Saudi Arabia law and practice in this area it's likely true women without a mahram may be barred (and are probably supposed to be barred).

In the later paragraph, the NOW source says women without their husbands are not admitted which is confusing for two reasons. First, I'm pretty sure it's wrong, technically at least a womens hould be admitted provided she is accompanies by a mahram (or her husband). Secondly it refers to the section as a womens or families section. But calling something a womens section when women may not even be admitted without her family (mahram or husband) seems rather strange to me. For the same reason, I removed 'sex' and instead simply left it as segregated dining. It's clearly segregated dining but it's more complicated then simple sex-segregation. Personally I would prefer the NOW source be removed completely, it's an activist source and using activist sources directly is generally not ideal. Either we should find a secondary source covering the NOW statement or a secondary source mentioning the criticism.

I've also added a bit more info from the sourced of the norm in the families section as it's not a simple case of seperate facilities but rather diners in the families section are hidden behind screen or curtains or in seperate rooms (so the women won't be seen without their veils by those who aren't supposed to see them).

Nil Einne (talk) 03:03, 28 November 2012 (UTC)

Section about adult breastfeeding[edit]

I have tagged it. It seems like a bit of an "and finally" story, and maybe it should be removed altogether as trivialising the overall topic of the article. Does anyone disagree? Formerip (talk) 18:21, 4 December 2012 (UTC)

I know it sounds a bit flaky, but I think it has been an issue of some significance. Maybe it could be cut back but I wouldn't like to see it deleted without a few knowledgeable editors commenting first. Unfortunately the creator of much of the article as it is now got indeffed a year or so ago so, and s/he had probably the best knowledge base on the article. DeCausa (talk) 20:02, 4 December 2012 (UTC)
I'm thinking that crazy things said by clerics could probably fill it's own wiki. If we know that this really was a big deal, then fair enough. But it doesn't seem like it was widely taken up as a suggestion, all it led to was someone commenting about it on a blog, AFAICT. Formerip (talk) 20:16, 4 December 2012 (UTC)
I think it has been a bigger issue than just one cleric's crazy view - although that's how it seems from this article. I'm going on some stuff I saw in researching material for another Saudi-related article a few months ago, without recalling the detail. But I admit that's not enough to resist deleting it here! Give it a couple of days and let's see if anyone else comes up with something before taking it out. DeCausa (talk) 21:47, 4 December 2012 (UTC)
Having said that User:Leicester17's comment in an earlier thread is relevant: "One example of the Western viewpoint is the section on "breast milk sons." This fatwa from a scholar with little remaining credibility in Saudi Arabia was never taken seriously by Saudis and dismissed as bizarre. Yet the incident earns a section in the article for no credible reason other that its bizarreness. It doesn't add anything to Saudi women's rights. The fact that one or two news reports quoting a women's driving activist doesn't make it worthy of an entire section." DeCausa (talk) 21:54, 4 December 2012 (UTC)
I've posted a request at the SA wikiproject, although I have no idea whether or not to expect any input. Formerip (talk) 22:05, 4 December 2012 (UTC)
Nothing's turned up so I've shortened it to 2 sentences. If someone wants to delete it altogether I won't lose any sleep. DeCausa (talk) 10:17, 12 December 2012 (UTC)


Purdah is definitely practiced in Saudi Arabia. But it is not called Purdah in Saudi. Purdah is an Indo-Pakistani word. Any suggestions? Khalidjavid (talk) 07:46, 8 April 2013 (UTC)

Hijab is the Arabic term. The information in our article, though, appears to be about Purdah as practiced on the Indian sub-continent, so it is probably not good content for this article. Formerip (talk) 20:36, 4 July 2013 (UTC)


Not sure how this article ended up on my watchlist, but it has. I take it you take issue with much of it. You may well be correct, but you should know that (IMO) your edits appeared to show a bias. For the record, I'm male but not Arab, religious or anything else that might give me a particular axe to grind here. AFAIK.

I made the mistake of addressing your edits from the top down this morning, which meant it took a long time to get through them all (as it threw up edit conflicts). Hence the mass revert towards the end. You might want to go easy with the edits as I'll be reviewing them again and, with the best will in the world, if one's faced with a wall-of-edits it's bound to end badly. Bromley86 (talk) 20:03, 4 July 2013 (UTC)

Just did another mass revert of your edits.

  • I'd already reverted the first (your cite didn't appear to support your point, although the lack of a page no. may mean I missed it). I added a cite that supported the original text (it's still there, as I reinstated it after the mass revert).
  • Your second said "A bizarre claim that is not supported by the book citation", which was odd as that would require you to have the book as there isn't a preview available. The two entrances thing isn't so bizarre when you read about the hoops that employers have to jump through (different entrances and segregated shifts, just so males & females don't meet). Not saying the one proves the other, but it does seem reasonable.
  • Your third deleted content that you claimed was not supported by the cite. Looked to me like it largely was.
  • Your fourth again assumed that you had the book, as the preview linked did not include the page referenced.

I stopped there and mass reverted. It wasn't allowing me to revert one-by-one as there were numerous subsequent changes to the same section. Even if that wasn't the case, I'd seen enough to worry me about the impartiality of your edits. As I suggested in the edit summary, it might be best if you pick a section and go to work on it. Then wait for a review. Just a suggestion. Bromley86 (talk) 01:24, 5 July 2013 (UTC)

I agree. I'd seen these edits and took a similar view, but didn't have the time to do anything about it. Glad you did. The User has made very similar problematic edits on the main Saudi Arabia article which I'll attend to when I have some time. DeCausa (talk) 13:58, 5 July 2013 (UTC)

Sexual violence and trafficking[edit]

The first paragraph in this section ends with the sentence "Most rape cases are unreported, because victims fear namus, reduced marriage prospects, accusations of adultery, or imprisonment.[18][116]" I have read both of the references and there is only anecdotal support for the statement that "Most rape cases are unreported" even though reasons are given that people with western society upbringings might consider support the case. Proper references need to be found or the sentence should be altered/removed. Douglas1958 (talk) 08:20, 30 August 2013 (UTC)

The statement was taken directly from the source. Also, I think those sources were used for other parts of that paragraph. Beyondallmeaning (talk) 22:39, 22 September 2013 (UTC)

Spelling "Qu'ran"[edit]

The name of the central religious text of Islam was spelled Qur'an (4 times), Quran (1), and Qu'ran (2). I've normalized them all to Quran.

The usual English spelling in general contexts is Koran, the most common specialist transliteration in my experience is Qur'ān, and the article page is titled Quran. Most English speakers are unfamiliar with the use of the apostrophe as a letter, representing ا ’alif, and Qu'ran is a common misspelling, elsewhere as well as here.

The redirect checker (linked from Special:WhatLinksHere/Quran under "External tools: Show redirects only") shows 77 pages that redirect to Quran. 35 of these page names are variant spellings. This count does not include the ones with articles (such as Al Quran, The Koran), adjectives (Koran al Karim, Noble qu'ran…), various diacritics on the letter "a" (Qur'àn, Qur'án, Qur'ân, Qur'ān …), or different representations of ’alif (Quran,Qur'an, Qur`an, Qura'an, Qur´an, Qurʼan, Qurʾan).

--Thnidu (talk) 00:34, 2 September 2013 (UTC)

Time for next GA nomination?[edit]

Hello to all! I have stumbled across this article, and I feel the quality, sourcing and writing style are very good. The last GAN was in 2010, which is a long time ago, and presumably the issues raised then have been resolved. An article that could be used as a template is one I reviewed recently, Female genital mutilation, which deals with a contentious topic in a relatively NPOV way despite using first-hand sources. I was wondering if any of the regular editors here would consider nominating and taking this article through to GA? In my opinion, it is quite close. Thanks all for your edits to this topic thus far. Kind regards, LT910001 (talk) 08:16, 4 November 2013 (UTC)

Most of the article was the work of banned user Mindbunny/Noloop in 2010/11. He/she did some good work on it but there was a WP:OWN issue. I don't think Mindbunny/Noloop agreed with much of the GAN comments and I don't think there was much change to the article as a result of the comments. A major issue raised was length - and I don't think Mindbunny/Noloop could bear to take anything out. After Mindbunny/Noloop was banned there's been some tinkering with it - but not much. (Although Mindbunny/Noloop's provacative block quotes - a major NPOV problem at the GAN - were removed.) I don't think you can assume that the problems identified at the GAN were fixed therefore. Also, IMHO, it reads too much like a personal essay. I suggest to get it to GA the main thing that needs to happen is to cut it back, which will not only deal with the length issue but, as a by-product, will take out the personal essay/ORish tinges. DeCausa (talk) 13:18, 4 November 2013 (UTC)

Female Literacy[edit]

The article gives two different values for the female literacy rate. In the introduction it says "female literacy is estimated to be 91%", while in the education section it says "Female literacy is estimated to be 81%". The value in the introduction is unsourced while the value in the education section is sourced from the CIA World Factbook, which currently gives the value as 82.2%. It seems that the 91% value is a typo, but could someone verify this? If it is not a typo, where did it come from and which is correct? OtD184 (talk) 23:31, 11 January 2015 (UTC)