Pre Islamic Concept of Women Education
Arabia, the cradle of Islam, is a vast peninsula in the South West of Asia. It is the largest peninsula in the world and one of the driest countries of the globe. Arabia occupies a unique position on the map of the Old World. It is situated at the meeting place of three continents i.e. Asia, Europe and Africa. Hence it commanded the central position in the globe.
Though there was no educational system like that of modern age, the Arabs of this period were not altogether devoid of culture. They were famous for their language and poetry. The language of the pre-Islamic Arab has been so rich that it can be compared with the developed languages of the modern Europe. The poems of pre-Islamic Arabia are one of our important sources for the study of the history of this period. They throw light on all aspects of pre-Islamic Arabia.
lmrul Qiyas, Tarafa bin al-Abid, Harith bin Hilliza, Anthara bin Shadad al-Absi and Amr bin Kulthum were some of the important poets in pre-Islamic Arabia. The position of women was worse than that of women of any other’s country contemporary history. The pre-Islamic Arabs regarded their women as chattels and looked upon them with contempt. Women had no social respect and no rights. A man could marry as many wives as he liked and could divorce as he wished. When a father was informed of the birth of a daughter, his face would turn pale with grief and anger. Sometime the father buried her alive inspite of her soul harrowing cries. Many fathers killed his female children for fear of poverty as is stated in the Holy Quran. “And kill ye not your children for fear of poverty. We provide them with livelihood and you also, surely killing them is a heinous sin”. There was no concept of women education before Islam.