Rape in Islamic Law
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Rape, known in Islamic law as zina bil-ikrah or zina bil-jabr (literally "fornication by force"), is a punishable crime generally defined by Muslim jurists as forced intercourse by a man with a woman who is not his wife or slave and without her consent. There was no concept of consent in Islamic law with regard either to a man's wives or slaves, though they could bring a legal complaint if intercourse with him caused them physical harm. A small number of hadiths describe punishments for the rape of free women and of female slaves who are not owned by the perpetrator. However, the Qur'an, on numerous occasions, permits Muslim men to have sexual relations with their own female slaves (famously referred to as "what your right hands possess"), often in conjunction with the commandment for men to keep otherwise chaste. In addition, various hadiths mention the sexual intercourse which slave owners (including Muhammad) had with their slaves.
Islamic law allowed the distribution of female captives as spoils of war and for them to be bought and sold, becoming sexually lawful after a short waiting period to confirm they were not pregnant. Slavery including sexual slavery persisted on a massive scale until modern times (see Slavery in Islamic Law). It is important to note, however, that slavery was legally abolished in majority Muslim countries around the world in the 19th and 20th centuries (though vast numbers of people remain illegally enslaved in a few places such as Mauritania) and all countries signed the 1949 Geneva convention which in article 27 forbids rape and abuse of female captives. It is also now considered forbidden by most scholars in the modern context, though a minority, such as Saudi Sheikh Saleh Al-Fawzan, argue that slavery remains Islamically legitimate. Similarly, today many Muslim-majority countries have made marital rape illegal or offer other legal protections, though others (mainly in the Arab world) do not do so, often explicitly, as also some non-Muslim countries. While there is no punishment for rape victims, human rights groups are also concerned about the risks faced by women reporting rape in some countries where Zina (illicit sexual intercourse) is a punishable offence, as detailed below.
Typically, apologetic approaches to the issue of slaves and concubines propose that the women mentioned in the Quran and hadiths consented to intercourse with their captors and to their enslavement lest they be left destitute since their men had been killed. Critics generally argue that this is highly improbable, point out a hadith in which raped captives were due to be ransomed back to their tribe, and in any case would be incompatible with the modern understanding of consent which could not validly be given in captive circumstances. Some Islamic modernist scholars question the authenticity of the relevant hadiths altogether, in line with their general skepticism towards the hadith corpus and rejection of traditional jurisprudence, and attempt alternative interpretations of the Quranic verses.
The right to have intercourse with wives and slaves in Islamic law
The consent of a slave for sex, for withdrawal before ejaculation (azl) or to marry her off to someone else was not considered necessary, historically. Kecia Ali, Associate professor of religion, Boston University (a Muslim convert) says regarding sex with slaves: "For premodern Muslim jurists, as well as for those marginal figures who believe that the permission [for slavery] still holds, the category “rape” doesn’t apply: ownership makes sex lawful; consent is irrelevant." Dr. Jonathan Brown, Associate Professor and Chair of Islamic Civilization at Georgetown University (also a Muslim convert) has made similar comments:
As with enslaved females, according to classical Islamic law, married women were required to oblige their husbands' sexual advances. He could punish his wife's continued refusal by beating her (with limitations) as a last resort. In the view of the Hanafi school of jurisprudence, a husband had legal entitlement to force his wife into intercourse if she did not so oblige and lacked certain legally allowed exemptions such as menstruation or fasting, even though the jurists might consider it unethical in some circumstances, while non-Hanafis neither explicitly authorized nor penalized this.For jurists, the concept of "rape" was equally non-existent in the contexts of both marriage and slavery.
Jonathan Brown notes that a wife or slave-concubine could though complain to a judge if she suffered physical harm (ḍarar).
In the final chapter he gives examples of medieval judicial reports of wives doing so due to issues with their husband's physical anatomy (judges could require him to use a lubricant, though judicial separation of the couple was sometimes considered necessary). However, on the same topic Brown earlier points out that "Both wives and slaves had the same recourse to courts or members of the community. Unlike wives, however, slaves were almost by definition cut off from support networks other than their owners".
Punishments for rape in Islamic Law and its application in modern contexts
By the end of the formative period of Islamic law, there was a consensus that rape was to be categorised as a variant of Zina (fornication, or unlawful intercourse) in which the coerced woman is spared punishment and the male rapist is punished with the hadd penalty. This penalty is stoning to death (if he is married) or lashings (if he is unmarried) - just as he would receive for ordinary zina. Four reliable muslim male witnesses (bayyinah) or a confession by the perpetrator are required in order to punish the rapist. Jurists agreed that there is no punishment for the rape victim. Her word that she was raped is accepted if there is no named perpetrator. If she does name the alleged rapist but is unable to prove the allegation, the Maliki school held the woman liable to receive the hadd penalty of 80 lashes for slander (qadhf), though the judge may spare her this punishment if there is some circumstancial evidence in support of her allegation. Maliki jurists even held that a woman must be punished with the hadd penalty for fornication (zina) if she falls pregnant while unmarried even if she says she was raped, though she is spared punishment if there is evidence of coercion from her physical state or a witness heard her cry for help. In contrast, for the Hanafi school it was enough to avoid punishment if she simply says that she was raped. Hanafis stated that pregnancy of an unmarried woman is not proof of zina, pointing to the principle that hadd punishments are not applied if there is any doubt.
Jurists disagree on whether the rapist must also pay a dowry as compensation to the victim. A controversial position of some modern jurists is that the hadd penalty for outlaws should apply to rapists (hadd Hirabah), described in Quran 5:33. Others say that rape can be treated by the judge as an offence that receives Tazir (discretionary) punishment (as in Pakistan, for example). These approaches avoid the impractical evidence requirement of four witnesses for applying a zina hadd penalty to the rapist in the absence of his confession. Incidentally, the four witnesses requirement for zina seems to have been introduced by Muhammad when Aisha was accused of adultery. In some other modern courts where the hadd punishment for zina is applied to rapists, a woman risks being accused of slanderous accusation (qadhf) if she cannot prove her allegation of rape to that evidence standard and the rapists go unpunished. Pregnancy is used as evidence of sex having occurred and women who report rape or sexual violence can be deemed to have confessed to unlawful sex (zina) and prosecuted for that instead. Due to a number of high profile instances, the risk of being prosecuted for zina creates a strong disincentive for women to report rape in some Muslim countries today.
Punishments for rape narrated in hadiths
Rape of a free woman
Muhammad ordered the stoning of a confessed rapist who attacked a free woman to whom he was not married.
Rape of another's slave
If the individual raped is a slave owned by other than the rapist, reparations are due to the owner of the slave in the form of a replacement slave or the amount by which the raped slave's value has been depreciated as a result of the rape and the perpetrator receives the hadd punishment. Hina Azam writes that "sexual ursupation of a slave woman was a form of property damage that required financial compensation to her owner for a depreciation of the property's value....usually equal to the amount by which she was depreciated by the act (this being of particular relevance if she was previously a virgin)".
Malik in his Muwatta confirms this punishment. Malik was founder of one of the four Sunni legal schools.
The authenticity of hadiths concerning the following incident in which Muhammad commands punishment by stoning for a man who has intercourse with his wife's slave are graded da'if (weak) by al-Albani, while Dar-us-Salam grade them hasan (good).
In another, similar incident, the rapist of his wife's slave is to be punished by stoning.
Another hadith reports Caliph Umar sentencing a man to stoning for taking a captive girl for himself. In this case, the illegitimacy is due to strict rules on the distribution of war booty. That hadith is discussed in another section below (Violations of the spoils-distribution system as rape).
Sex with female slaves and war captives in the Qur'an
There is no equivalent term for ‘rape’ in the Qur'an, although Quran 4:19 forbids believing men to inherit wives by compulsion. Nevertheless, while chastity is encouraged as a virtue, it is frequently commanded alongside the recurring exception "except from their wives or those their right hands possess", as set out below. There is no verse in the Qur'an which explicitly discourages forced or coercive sex, despite this being an obvious and virtually certain occurance when it permits sexual access to female slaves or captives.
Qur'an 23:1-6 & 70:29-30 - Believers should have sex only with their wives and slaves
A number of verses in the Qur'an mention sexual relations with slaves as a category distinct from wives, making it clear that sexual relations with female slaves are permitted without marrying the slave first. For example, Surah 23 makes mention of successful Muslims and their characteristics:
The instruction to "guard [one's] private parts" is the Qur'an's standard manner of commanding chastity. What one's "right hand possesses" is likewise the Qur'an's standard manner of referring to one's slaves or war captives. Successful believers are those who engage in sexual activities only with their wives and slaves.
The same idea recurs in surah 70:
Qur'an 33:50 - Muhammad may have sex with his wives and captives from the war booty
Another verse sets out Muhammad's licit sexual access to his wives and captives from the war booty (probably alluding to those mentioned earlier in the surah), as well as any of his female first cousins and any believing woman who offers herself to him if he wishes to marry her. The verse states that this is a special permission granted for Muhammad alone, though it is unclear which part of the verse comprises these exclusive rights. A common interpretation was that Muhammad is granted here exemption from the maximum limit of four wives.
The words translated "what Allah has returned to you" (wamā [...] afāa l-lahu ʿalayka) mean Muhammad's share of the spoils of war, since the same language is mirrored in Quran 59:6-7 with that meaning. Those verses twice mention "what Allah has returned to his messenger" (wamā afāa l-lahu ʿalā rasūlihi).
Earlier verses in the same surah suggest that these women were among the captives, land, houses and wealth seized during a decisive battle with opponents who had left their fortresses (Quran 33:20-27). According to commentators, this was Khaybar, though other views were narrated too.
See also the two verses which follow verse 50, (Quran 33:51-52), which give Muhammad permission to set aside and return to his wives in accordance with his wishes, and forbids Muhammad from exchanging or taking any further wives even if their beauty pleases him, though maintains his limitless permission to take additional concubines.
Qur'an 4:24 - Permission to marry slave women, even if they are already married
Quran 4:22-25 is a passage listing the women who believing men are forbidden to marry, such as their sisters or nieces. Verse 24 states that also forbidden are "married women except those your right hands possess" (i.e. slaves or captives).
This verse permits the believers to marry those whom their right hands possess (female slaves) who already have husbands, so long as the dower is paid. Other verses set out in the previous section show that slave owners did not even have to marry their slaves in order to have intercourse with them (See also the section below on the common apologetic claim of Freedom and marriage as a universal requirement).
The next verse tells any believer who cannot afford to marry a free believing woman to instead marry "from those whom your right hands possess of believing slave girls". This was understood to mean marrying a believing slave girl owned by someone else (which makes sense as it switches to the plural "right hands possess", and a slave owner by definition would not be too poor to marry a free woman). In Islamic law, she would remain a slave after the marriage, but her owner would no longer have the right of sexual access to her, which transfers to her husband alone. The owner had the right to marry off his female slave without her consent, and would own any children produced by the marriage. If the owner himself wished to marry his own slave, he had to free her first. For details see Slavery in Islamic Law.
The verse states that permission is to be sought from her people, though acceptance would inevitably be a choice not free from coercion, given that the alternative was for her owner to retain the right of sexual intercourse with her, granted elsewhere in the Quran. Perhaps in recognition of the potentially coercive nature of such an arrangement, the same verse halves the punishment she would face for certain conduct during the marriage (traditionally interpreted as adultery).
Sahih hadiths in the collections of Muslim and Abu Dawud give the traditional background story for the permission granted by the previous verse (Quran 4:24): some of Muhammad's fighters were reluctant to have sexual contact with female captives who were already married to the defeated men of the mushrikeen (those who associated partners with Allah).
The hadith in Sahih Muslim is found in a chapter dedicated to the topic; the chapter is entitled "Chapter: It is permissible to have intercourse with a female captive after it is established that she is not pregnant, and if she has a husband, then her marriage is annulled when she is captured".
Ibn Kathir, the most prominent of all Qur'an interpreters, had this to say in regards to verse 4:24:
Similarly in Tafsir al-Jalalayn (Qur'an interpretation by two Jalals namely: Jalaluddin Mahalli and Jalaluddin Suyuti, both authorities):
In Islamic law, if a slave woman was married her owner had no right of sexual access to her. Some early Muslim scholars held that slave marriages, which could occur between slaves or between a slave and a free person, were automatically dissolved when ownership was transferred because her new owner was buying sexual access to her but two men could not have licit access to the same woman. Later, a consensus emerged that the marriage and licit sexual access remained between the slave woman and her husband alone upon transfer of ownership, whatever his status.
Sex with female slaves and war captives in the hadiths
Scenes of Muhammad's companions, and indeed Muhammad himself, engaging in sexual activity with slaves and captives are common throughout hadith literature. While the female perspective is largely absent, leaving the reader to speculate as to whether the female slave or captive would have been receptive to the advances of Muhammad and his companions, it is fair to assume that in at least some (if not most or indeed all) of these cases, the sexual activity occurred without the female's consent and thus qualified as rape. This is particularly clear in the examples that follow where Muhammad's companions initiate sexual contact with the captive women shortly after having slayed their sons, husbands, fathers, and brothers. At the very least, it can be said that in no such case does Muhammad intervene in and that in all such cases he actively permits what, by all appearances, is an instance of his companion's raping a captive or slave. These are originally free non-Muslims who are captured in battle. The entire population of a conquered territory can be enslaved, thus providing women who are otherwise rare on the battlefield. This paves the path for concubinage. The Muslim military commander is allowed to choose between unconditionally releasing, ransoming or enslaving war captives. If a person converted to Islam after being enslaved, their emancipation would be considered a pious act but not obligatory. Islamic law does not allow enslavement of free-born Muslims.
Islamic jurists permitted slave raiding and kidnapping of non-Muslims from Dar al Harb. South Asian scholars ruled that jihad was not needed to seize non-Muslims nor was it necessary to invite them to Islam before seizing them. Raiders were free to take and enslave any non-Muslim. However, Islamic jurists held that non-Muslims who lived in areas which had formal pacts with Muslims were to be protected from enslavement.
Muhammad has intercourse with his slave girl Maria bint Sham'un
Muhammad had a child with a slave girl of his known as Maria the Copt, who was a gift to him from the Governor of Alexandria. In a hadith from Sahih Muslim, a phrase translated as "slave girl" is, in the orignal Arabic, umm walad (أُمِّ وَلَدِ) (literally: "mother of the child") and is the title given to a slave concubine who bore her master a child.
The following hadith is graded Sahih by Dar-us-Salam:
Tafsir al-Jalalayn says of the verse (Quran 66:1) referred to in this hadith:
An alternate, or additional circumstance for this verse has also been narrated in multiple sahih hadiths (in yet another version Sahih Muslim 9:3497, Muhammad ate honey at Hafsa's house instead of Zainab's).
"Honey" was also a sexual euphemism and an explicit example of its usage in this sense is found in a hadith in Abu Dawud:
Sean Anthony and Catherine Bronson have noted that "Modern scholars have been inclined to regard the more scandalous story involving the slave girl as the earlier one given that it appears in the earliest sources, and despite the fact that the honey story has a superior pedigree in the eyes of the ḥadīth scholars. These modern scholars reason that, if the story of Ḥafṣah’s jealousy after seeing the Prophet with his slave-girl predates the honey story, then exegetes likely contrived the honey narrative at a later date in order to provide an alternative to the unflattering portrayal of the Prophet and his wives in the former story. Furthermore, while the honey story may provide a somewhat plausible explanation for Q 66:1–2, its explanatory force greatly diminishes when applied to the remainder of the pericope. The gravity of Q 66:5–6, which threatens divorce as a penalty for plotting against the Prophet, makes a poor match for the trifles of the honey story."
Another relevant hadith is one which concerns an incident which led to the famous event of Ghadir Khumm, which is much disputed between Sunnis and Shias. Both Sunni and Shia sources agree that Muhammad received complaints about 'Ali taking a slave-girl from the Khums (the fifth of all booty allotted for the state) to which those complaining felt that no private party was entitled.
The Arabic of the Sunni hadith below mentions 'Ali taking a Ghusl bath (which is mandatory after sexual contact or ejaculation), implying sexual activity. Later, at a place called Ghadir Khumm, Muhammad tried to pacify those who were upset with 'Ali by declaring Ali to be his Mawla. Mawla is an honorific meaning something between "follower", "ally", and "leader", which the Shia interpret to mean "successor of Muhammad". Thus, in some sense, Ali's having raped a captive becomes the immediate cause of what the Shi'a insist was the the announcement of Ali's succession. The emergent Sunni polemic here casts some doubt on the historical reliability of the hadith, yet, as a hadith included in Sahih Bukhari, it more than meets the Sunni requirements for authenticity.
Ibn Hajar al-Asqalani (d. 1449), one of the most famous Hadith scholars of all time, points out in his seminal Fath al-Bari (the still-standard commentary on Sahih Bukhari) what several scholars before him noted: that in accounts of this event, Ali does not observe the required istibra' (waiting period) to determine whether or not the captive girl was pregnant. Al-Asqalani quotes al-Khattabi who summarizes the possibilities: "she was either a virgin [strongly implying a young age in a culture where women married young], had not yet reached maturity, or Ali's ijtihad [independent reasoning] led him to not adhere to the waiting period in her case."
The istibra' was the waiting period which had to be observed before commencing intercourse with a newly acquired slave-woman or girl in order to avoid doubts about paternity if she became pregnant. For an adult slave woman this waiting period was one menstral period. Scholars disagreed on the waiting period before sexual intercourse with slave girls too young to menstruate (either a waiting period of one month or three), as discussed in another section below. However, it is worth noting that Ibn Hajar states that "the practice of many Companions" was to not observe istibra' for virgin pre-pubescent girls. See here for a translation of Ibn Hajar's commentary on this hadith and some reports of this same view attributed to the generation after the companions ('Ikrima and Iyas b. Mu'awiyah).
Muhammad's companions rape captives intended for ransom
On one occasion, presented with newly captured women, Muhammad's companions were only concerned about whether coitus interruptus ('azl) was permissible.
In another version of the same hadith in Sahih Muslim (also found in Malik's Muwatta and Abu Dawud), it is said that the Muslims' goal was to ransom the women back to members of the defeated party for monetary gain. It is explained that as a result of not wanting to get the women pregnant prior to ransoming them, Muhammad's companions inquired as to whether coitus interruptus was permissible.
Yet another version of the same story in Sahih Bukhari is even clearer about Muhammad's companions' sole concern being the potential detriment to the price of the captives if they were impregnated.
In these narrations captive women were due to be ransomed back to their tribes. This undermines a common modern apologetic claim that enslavement and intercourse with captive women was permitted in order to save them from destitution after their men had been defeated in battle.
Muhammad's men hesitate to rape married captives until a verse is sent down
For other narrations of this hadith see the section above on Quran 4:24.
Umar tells a man to beat his wife for preventing intercourse with his slave girl
Abdullah ibn Umar (the son of the 2nd Caliph, Umar ibn al-Khattab) said that his father ordered a man to have intercourse with a slave girl after his wife had tried to make this haram for him by means of adult suckling.
Ghusl (full body wash) not required between intercourse with slave girls
Imam Malik was asked about intercourse with multiple slave girls.
Explicit distinction between zina and legal intercourse
Since zina (fornication or adultery) only applies to intercourse with other than one's wives or female slaves, it is only in these contexts that rape is considered possible. The following narration graded hasan (good) by al-Albani in Abu Dawud explicitly makes this distinction by recognizing offspring with one's wives or slaves as legitimate, and included in inheritance, and by labeling the offspring with other women as illegitimate, and removed from inheritance.
The Prophet (ﷺ) decided regarding one who was treated as a member of a family after the death of his father, to whom he was attributed when the heirs said he was one of them, that if he was the child of a slave-woman whom the father owned when he had intercourse with her, he was included among those who sought his inclusion, but received none of the inheritance which was previously divided; he, however, received his portion of the inheritance which had not already been divided; but if the father to whom he was attributed had disowned him, he was not joined to the heirs.If he was a child of a slave-woman whom the father did not possess or of a free woman with whom he had illicit intercourse, he was not joined to the heirs and did not inherit even if the one to whom he was attributed is the one who claimed paternity, since he was a child of fornication whether his mother was free or a slave.
Muhammad's other female captives
On at least two occasions, according to accounts in sahih hadiths, Muhammad captured and cohabited with war captives Safiyah and Juwairiyah, presumably against their will (having just led the slaughter of their families and tribes).
Surah 33 twice gives Muhammad explicit and direct permission to have sexual contact with his existing wives (having married more than a dozen times, he is prohibited here from marrying further) and with any slaves he may possess now or may acquire in the future.
Earlier verses in the same surah suggest that these women were among the captives, land, houses and wealth seized during a decisive battle with opponents who had left their fortresses (Quran 33:20-27). According to commentators, this was Khaybar, though other views were narrated too.
Safiyah bint Huayy
Safiyah the daughter of Huayy was the wife of a Jewish Rabbi named Kinana. when Muhammad conquered the Jewish village of Khaibar, he had the Rabbi tortured and then killed. According to an account in Sahih Bukhari, Muhammad then took captive the Rabbi's wife.
Juwairiyah bint al-Harith
A hadith from Sunan Abu Dawud explains how, following a surprise attack on the Banu Mustaliq, Muhammad took captive the "very beautiful" Juwairiyah, making Aisha jealous.
A hadith in Sahih Bukhari confirms the same narrative.
Waiting period before sex with slave girls too young to menstruate
While it is relatively well known that forced marriage of children was permitted by all schools of Islamic Jurisprudence and that some did not require puberty prior to marital consummation (all of which is illegal today in most modern Muslim-majority countries), less well known is that intercourse was also permitted with pre-pubescent slave girls.
It is important to reiterate at this point that the majority of Islamic scholars today consider slavery to no longer be permissible in a modern context. Slavery was outlawed in Muslim majority countries around the world during the 19th and 20th centuries (though still persists illegally in a few places such as Mauritania where as of the early 2020s, human rights groups estimate that 20% of the population are still enslaved including children). Modern muslims would generally be as appalled as anyone else to learn of these past practices.
The istibra' was the period of time during which a man may not have sexual intercourse with a female slave that he has just acquired. This was intended to prevent doubts over a child's paternity in case a slave-girl falls pregnant shortly after being bought by a new master.
The Kuwait Encyclopedia of Fiqh, Volume 3, p. 174 summarises the opinions of the Sunni legal schools regarding the length of istibra' for non-menstruating slaves whether because they are either too young or too old. It says that Malikis gave opinions ranging from one month to three months. The Hanbali school said three months, while the Hanafi and Shafi'i schools said it is one month.
The Risala was a famous treatise of Maliki fiqh (jurisprudence). It gives the istibra' for child slave-girls (who do not yet menstruate) as three months. For slaves who do menstruate, the istibra' is instead measured as one menstral period.
Ahmad ibn Hanbal was founder of another major school of jurisprudence. Here Abu Dawud reports Ibn Hanbal's response when the latter was asked about the istibra' for child slave-girls:
Ibn Hanbal's son Abdullah too reported his father's views on this question, as well as on the question of sexual touching of pre-menstral slave-girls. Ibn Hanbal permitted either of these after three months:
Sufyan was the teacher of Ibn Hanbal and Ishaq. Here the views of all three are reported by Ahmad's student al-Kausaj:
Aḥmad said, “What Sufyān said is excellent.”Isḥāq said, “There is no harm in his kissing her and having sexual contact with her, because she is among those whom one need not fear having to return to her previous owner because of pregnancy.
Shafi'i, founder of another major sunni legal school, said that the istibra' in this situation was one month (as mentioned above). See also the section below about polytheist slaves for his view that sex with polytheist child slaves becomes lawful only once the child has embraced Islam, which may be achieved by coercion in some circumstances.
These views contrast with the statement by Ibn Hajar discussed in another section above, that "the practice of many Companions" was to not observe istibra' for virgin pre-pubescent girls. He may have had in mind narrations similar to some attributed to the tabi'un (2nd generation after the companions) which were collected by Ibn Abi Shaybah (d. 849 CE). A chapter of the Musannaf of Ibn Abi Shaybah records a number of relevant narrations including these from 'Ikrima and the renowned judge Iyas b. Mu'awiyah:
Regarding the man who buys a pre-pubescent slave girl, even one younger than that. He said: “There is nothing wrong with touching her before observing Istibra”
(16907) Zayd Bin Hubab <– Hammad Bin Salamah <– Iyas Bin Muawiyah:Regarding a man who brought a pre-pubescent slave girl, do not those like her have sexual intercourse? He said: “there is nothing wrong with performing the sexual act upon her without observing istibra”
Screenshots of the sources used in this section are also available here (archive).
Limitations on rape of slaves and war captives
Avoiding physical harm during intercourse
Beyond the temporary requirement of waiting past the Iddah period or conversion of a slave, the only restriction on sex with one's slaves or wives is that they do not suffer physical harm in the process. However, this derives from a generic prohibition against incurring harm (ḍarar) upon anyone at any time, and men are authorized in the view of jurists to beat their wives and slaves as a form of physical discipline if they deny him sexual access or fail to obey him in some other mandatory capacity.
In practical terms, the relevance of the "do-no-harm" principle in this case is that a man should not penetrate his wives or slaves against their will if they are physically too small to withstand penetration (i.e. in the case of very young girls) or if they are seriously ill or injured to the point where penetration would inhibit their healing or magnify their injury. There is no consideration here for harm in the form of "mental anguish", and men are permitted to sexually utilize very young, ill, and/or injured slaves against their will through means other than penetration if such less egregious means will help avoid severe physical injury.
Waiting until the completion of the Iddah or childbirth
A hadith graded sahih by Dar-us-Salam in Abu Dawud describes the Iddah waiting period as the "one menstrual period" after acquisition of the slave wherein the new owner must abstain from sexual contact in order to ascertain whether or not the slave is pregnant, so as not to confuse paternity.
Another hadith graded sahih by Dar-us-Salam in Tirmidhi explains that if the slave is pregnant
Waiting until adult polytheist slaves convert, by force if necessary
Although Muhammad's men seem to have had intercourse with captive polytheist women whom they had captured during the expedition to Awtas/Autas, most jurists later ruled that this was later forbidden by Quran 2:221 (the verse only forbids marriage to polytheist women, but scholars inferred that this also applied to intercourse with slaves). Intercourse with Muslim, Christian, or Jewish slaves was not affected by this restriction.
Early scholars of fiqh devised a workaround for this restriction, including the allowance of raping younger captives who were polytheist:
- if Zoroastrian and idolatrous women are taken prisoner, they are coerced into Islam; if they embrace it, sexual relations with them are permissible and they can (also) be used as maidservants. If they do not embrace Islam, they are used as maidservants but not for sexual relations (wa idhā subhīna (sic) al-majūsiyyāt wa ‘abadat al awthān ujbirna 'alā al-Islām fa-in asl ama wutiʼna ma 'stukhdimna wa in lam yuslimna 'stukhdimna wa lam yūtaʼna).
The contradiction inherent in this passage is evident: despite the unspecified coercive measures, some of the women in question refused conversion and, consequently, the masters could not take full advantage of their services. If the only way to embrace Islam is pronouncing the declaration of faith, the conversion of a defiant woman may not be possible: it is not always feasible to force someone to utter the shahāda. According to a tradition transmitted on the authority of Hasan al-Basri, the Muslims used various devices to attain their objective: they turned the Zorastrian slave-girl toward the Ka‘ba, ordered her to pronounce the shahāda and to perform ablution. Her master then engaged in sexual relations after she had one menstruating period while in his house. Others hold that the master must teach the slave-girl to pray, to purify herself and to shave her private parts before any intercourse. The participation of the girl in this procedure is minimal, and this wording may be interpreted us a considerable lowering of the conversion requirements so that the girl becomes eligible for sexual intercourse as expeditiously as possible. Among the early traditionists, only a few were willing to go beyond this and allow sexual relations with a Zoroastrian slave-girl without insisting on at least a semblance of conversion.Shafi‘i's treatment of the issue is slightly different. Speaking of grown-up Zoroastrian or polytheist women taken into captivity, he maintains that no sexual relations with them are allowed before they embrace Islam without bringing up the question of converting them forcibly. If the female captives are minor but were taken captive with at least one of their parents, the ruling is the same. If, however, the girl was captured without her parents, or one of her parents embraced Islam, she is considered a Muslim and is coerced into embracing it (nahkumu lahā bihukm al-Islām wa nujbiruhā ‘alayhi). Once this happens, sexual relations with her are lawful.
While most Islamic scholars today are comfortable with at least the temporary abolition of slavery in light of the fact that Islamic scriptures universally praise the freeing of slaves as a meritorious act, few are comfortable with the idea of permanently and irreversibly amending divine law. As a result, the legal rulings relating to slaves and the technical permissibility of owning slaves under the proper circumstances (e.g. under the rule of a "legitimate khilafah", or caliphate) persist, as exemplified in the following fatwa from the most popular Islamic fatwa website in the world, based in Saudi Arabia.
Likewise, as with all rulings of the shariah, the basic rulings governing family relations are unchanging. It would be difficult even today to find a trusted Islamic authority that does not still, at some level, permit marital rape and give general license for wife beating as a potential means by which to compel one's able but unwilling spouse into sexual activity, among other things.
Others side with modern values regarding these issues. Khaled Abou al-Fadl is a prominent reformist scholar who has summarised his understanding of modern Islamic views on slavery and sexual exploitation:
The position of slavery had been resolved for most of the twentieth century: slavery was condsidered unlawful and immoral, and all Muslim countries without exception had made the practice illegal. Importantly, most Muslim scholars had reached the reasonable conclusion that slavery is inconsistent with Qur'anic morality and the ethical objectives of the Islamic faith. In short, the prohibition of slavery was considered a closed matter.
Modern revisionary perspectives and criticisms thereof
Freedom and marriage as a requirement for intercourse
Verses 4:23-24 (Quran 4:23-24) are sometimes presented as evidence for the idea that a man must first manumit and marry a slave in order to have sex with her. The verse lists the types of women a Muslim man is permitted to marry, one given option being his slave women, of whom he may free and marry. While 4:23-24 do not mention slaves outside of a marital context, several other verses (e.g. Quran 23:1-6 and Quran 70:29-30) make clear reference to sexual activity with slaves with whom the owner is not married by explicitly distinguishing between his sexual access to his wives and his sexual access to his slaves. The further example of Muhammad's companions raping captives from Banu al-Mustaliq prior to ransoming them (a scenario which effectively necessitates their non-marriage) confirms this idea.
In addition, there is the universally attested legal category of the Umm Walad (literally "mother of child") that is used by Islamic jurists to refer to those slaves who have given birth to one of their master's children. The child is free from birth and the mother is free upon her owner's death. An Umm Walad is legally distinct from a free mother because she is still a slave. Indeed, the concept of Umm Walad is apparently attested even in the prophet's time according to a hadith in Sahih Muslim - further clarifying the matter is the fact that in this very hadith, Muhammad approves of the companion's sexual relations with his unmarried slave girl.
Encouragement to chastity as a prohibition on rape
Verse 24:33 (Quran 24:33), which instructs unmarried men to keep chaste and instructs slaveowners to "force not [their] maids to prostitution", is sometimes presented as evidence for the idea that sexual activity is only permitted in a marital context and that slaveowners may not compel their slave girls to sexual activity of any sort.
Chastity is instructed throughout the Qur'an and is repeatedly defined as the habit of one who "guards their private parts" from all except "their wives [of whom they may have up to four] and what their right hand possesses [i.e. female slaves, of whom they may have an unlimited number]" (e.g. Quran 23:6, Quran 33:50, Quran 33:52, and Quran 70:30). It is clear that, in the view of the Qur'an's author, an unmarried male may be considered chaste even if he engages in sexual activity with a technically unlimited number of women, so long as they are his slaves.
The portion of the verse which instructs slaveowners to "force not [their] maids to prostitution" has traditionally been understood in its simplest sense, which prohibits slaveowners from playing the role of a pimp and trafficking their slave women - such a business built on illegal intercourse is of course prohibited and, understood this way, the verse says nothing of novel import. Another accepted sense of this verse is that if a female slave desires her (or, say, her child's) freedom, her master ought to give her some legal means by which to pursue it, the alternative being her feeling compelled to prostitute herself to earn the funds necessary to purchase that freedom (traditional tafsirs also mention the also undesirable possibility of a master forcing a slave to prostitution as a condition for her freedom). Since such a temptation on the part of the slave girl is all the more plausible given the likelihood that she was captured in a war or raid where her people were both slaughtered and enslaved (leaving her with no means), and so the verse concludes by saying that if a slave girl is driven to such behavior, then Allah will be forgiving. And in the simpler sense, if her master forces her to prostitution, then Allah will forgive her for what was not in her control.
Violations of the spoils-distribution system as rape
Quote from al-Shafi'i
A quote from al-Umm of Imam al Shafi'i, the founder of the Shafi'i school of Islamic jurisprudence, is sometimes misrepresented as forbidding slave owners from raping their female slaves.
It is clear, however, that "acquires by force" here refers to the manner in which the man gained possession of the slave girl, not a description of the later sexual act. Indeed, this quote comes from the section entitled ghasb (property usurpation). According to Islamic law, a fifth of all war and raid spoils (referred to as the Khum - literally "fifth"), including captives who may be sold for funds, is to be allotted for public spending. Taking and raping a captive from this public allotment, as Ali is reported to have in one instance, amounts to theft and zina (illegal intercourse). This, as well as taking and raping someone else's slave, is of course prohibited and punishable. Indeed, in the remainder of his many-volume legal work al-Umm, al-Shafi'i painstakingly outlines the laws regarding the sexual obligations of one's wives and slaves, in no place suggesting that rape of the female is punishable in these contexts.
Quote from Malik
A quote from the Muwatta of Imam Malik, founder of the Maliki school of jurisprudence, is also sometimes misrepresented in this vein. As with the quote taken from al-Umm, this quote from the Muwatta is likewise only referring to stolen slaves and has no bearing on one's own slaves and wives. Fines for raping slave girls were always paid to the master. And, just like Imam Shafi'i, Malik details the legal practices of slavery in several other places throughout the same text.
Hadith regarding the caliph Umar
A hadith in the Sunan of al-Bayhaqi describes the Caliph Umar punishing Dhiraar for raping a captive woman and is sometimes presented as evidence that one is not permitted to have sexual intercourse with slaves.
As with the quote taken from Imam Shafi'i, this almost certainly refers to a violation of the system for distributing war spoils. Dhiraar's intercourse with the captive girl was illegal and merited stoning not because of her captive status or lack of consent, but because he had intercourse with the girl without that girl having been allotted to him at the behest of the caliph (Umar in this case), who has the responsibility of distributing spoils. Neither captivity nor consent are mentioned as a factor in the punishment. Indeed, in a another hadith discussed above, Umar tells a man to have intercourse with his slave girl after his wife tried to prevent it.
Quote from Shafi'i on pleasure without compulsion in intercourse
A passage from al-Shāfiʿī's al-Umm is occasionally proposed on Islamic websites as establishing a principle for sexual consent in general from a major legal figure. However, such a generalization is not justified from the context, which is about marital relations and specifically the husband's obligation but not compulsion to satisfy his wife' sexual needs. Here are comments and a translation by Professor Kecia Ali:
Shāfiʿī is unaware of his blinders. He obviously refers only to men when he declares that "intercourse is a matter of pleasure and no one is compelled to it." Women's sexual availability is, for him, a condition of their support and a prerequisite for their rights to visitation: "if any of them [his wives] refuses to have sex with him, she has disobeyed and abandoned her claim."
He said: And so if she is alone with him [i.e., he has no other wives], or with a slavegirl he has that he has sex with, he is ordered [to fulfill his obligations] in reverence to God the Exalted, and not to do her harm with regard to intercourse, and he is not obligated to any specific amount of it (wa lam yufraḍ ʿalayhi minhu shayʾbi ʿaynihi). Rather, he is only [obligated] to provide what she absolutely cannot do without, maintenance and lodging and clothing, and also to visit her (yaʾwī). However, intercourse is a matter of pleasure and no one is compelled to it.
Professor Jonathan A. C. Brown in reference to the same ruling remarks, "Shafiʿi himself, in a ruling followed dutifully by the major figures of his school, did not require a husband to have sex with his wife or slave-concubine because, ‘as for sex, it is a locus of pleasure and no one should be compelled to do it.’"
- Rape - A hub page that leads to other articles related to Rape
- The High Rape-Scale in Saudi Arabia - WomanStats Project (blog), January 16, 2013 (archived), http://womanstats.wordpress.com/2013/01/16/the-high-rape-scale-in-saudi-arabia/
Mauritania abolished slavery in 1981, but only criminalised slave ownership in 2007 and introduced punishment in 2015
- As of the early 2020s, marital rape is not recognised as a crime in many Muslim-majority countries, nor in India, China, Myanmar, much of the Caribbean, and much of sub-Saharan Africa, though is illegal in Indonesia, Turkey, the Balkans, most of central Asia, and much of west Africa. See the detailed information in the Wikipedia article Marital rape laws by country, though note that in some cases the colour-coded map is inaccurate. A lack of legal protection in some countries and / or attitudes which refuse to accept the concept of marital rape exacerbates the predicament of millions of women suffering Forced Marriage in certain regions of the world.
- Ali, Kecia, "Concubinage and Consent", Cambridge University Press, January 20, 2017, https://www.cambridge.org/core/journals/international-journal-of-middle-east-studies/article/concubinage-and-consent/F8E807073C33F403A91C1ACA0CFA47FD.
- Kecia Ali, "The Truth About Islam and Sex Slavery History Is More Complicated Than You Think", Huffington Post, August 19th, 2016, http://www.huffingtonpost.com/kecia-ali/islam-sex-slavery_b_8004824.html (archive)
- "'slave rape' is a tough term to decipher from a Shariah perspective. A male owner of a female slave has the right to sexual access to her. Though he could not physically harm her without potentially being held legally accountable if she complained, her 'consent' would be meaningless since she is his slave." Comment by Dr. Jonathan AC Brown on his Reddit AMA session, 2016 (archive)
- Jonathan A.C. Brown (2019) Slavery & Islam, London: Oneworld Publications, Chapter 7, pp. 281-282, ISBN 978-1-78607-635-9
- Susila, Muh Endriyo (2013). "Islamic Perspective on Marital Rape" 20 (2). Jurnal Media Hukum, p.328.
- Professor Jonathan Brown writes regarding medieval jurist interpretions of Q. 4:34: "If a wife exhibited egregious disobedience (nushūz) such as uncharacteristically insulting behaviour, leaving the house against the husband's will and without valid excuse or denying her husband sex (without medical grounds), the husband should first admonish her to be conscious of God and proper etiquette. If she did not desists from her behaviour, he should cease sleeping with her in their bed. If she still continued with her nushūz, he should then strike her to teach her the error of her ways."
Jonathan A. C. Brown, Misquoting Muhammad, London: Oneworld Publications, 2014, p. 276
For more details, see the Islamic Law section of the article Wife Beating in Islamic Law.
- Kecia Ali (2016) "Sexual Ethics and Islam", Oneworld publications, ISBN: 978-1-78074-381-3 p. 12
"The Hanafi view that husbands were entitled to have sex forcibly with their wives when the latter did not have a legitimate reason to refuse sex was not widely shared outside that school. Even the majority of Hanafi thinkers who accepted this doctrine recognized a distinction between forced intercourse and more usual sexual relations between spouses; although both were equally licit, sex by force might be unethical"
And p. 120 "Non-Hanafis do not penalize a husband for forcing sex on his wife, but neither do they explicitly authorize it in the way that al-Khassaf does. For all, marital rape is an oxymoron; rape (ightisab) is a property crime that by definition cannot be committed by a husband."
- Quraishi-Landesi, Asifa. Feminism, Law, and Religion. Routledge. p. 178. ISBN 978-1-317-13579-1, 15 April 2016. https://books.google.co.in/books?id=QfkFDAAAQBAJ&redir_esc=y.
- Azam, Hina. Sexual Violation in Islamic Law: Substance, Evidence, and Procedure. Cambridge University Press. p. 69. ISBN 978-1-107-09424-6, 26 June 2015. https://books.google.co.in/books?id=fhy_CQAAQBAJ&pg=PA69&redir_esc=y#v=onepage&q&f=false.
- Jonathan A.C. Brown (2019) Slavery & Islam, London: Oneworld Publications, Chapter 7, p. 96, ISBN 978-1-78607-635-9
On the same page Brown also remarks, "According to the Quran, both marriage and ownership (in the case of the female slave and her male master) were relationships in which sex was licit (Quran 23:5-6). Within these relationships, consent for sexual relations was assumed or irrelevant. In marriage the relationship itself entailed ongoing consent for sex, and with a female slave it was not needed (assuming the slave girl was soley owned by one man and not married; in both cases she was off limits). Kecia Ali has observed that there is no evidence for any requirement for consent for sex from slave women in books of Islamic law from the eighth to the tenth centuries"
- Jonathan A.C. Brown, Slavery & Islam, Chapter 7, p. 283, London: Oneworld Publications, 2019 ISBN 978-1-78607-635-9
- Ibid. p. 132
- Hina Azam RAPE AS A VARIANT OF FORNICATION (ZINĀ) IN ISLAMIC LAW: AN EXAMINATION OF THE EARLY LEGAL REPORTS, Journal of Law and Religion, vol. 28, no. 2, 2012, pp. 441–66
- "Rape in Islamic law: Establishing the crime and upholding the rights of the innocent", 23 January 2022, https://www.alhakam.org/rape-in-islam/.
- Peters, R.. "Zinā or Zināʾ". in P. Bearman. Encyclopaedia of Islam (2nd ed.). Brill, 2012.
- Position paper by Karamah (Muslim Women Lawyers for Human Rights) Zina, Rape, and Islamic Law: An Islamic Legal Analysis of the Rape Laws in Pakistan(2011)
- See the 2nd of the two hadiths here regarding Imam Malik's view: Al-Muwatta 41:16
- See Quran 24:4-17 and the discussion in Punishments for Zina
- Dr Azman Mohd Noor, Punishment for rape in Islamic Law, Malayan Law Journal Articles  5 MLJ cxiv
- Murtaza Haider, "A license to rape", Dawn, June 5, 2003, https://www.dawn.com/news/1016271/a-license-to-rape
- Saudi Arabia: Forthcoming Penal Code Should Protect Rights - Human Rights Watch 29 April 2022
- "Judged for more than her crime", Cornell Law School, p. 13, September 2018, https://www.deathpenaltyworldwide.org/wp-content/uploads/2019/12/Judged-More-Than-Her-Crime.pdf.
- Azam, Hina, "Rape", http://www.oxfordislamicstudies.com, http://www.oxfordislamicstudies.com/article/opr/t349/e0075.
- "(9) Chapter: It is permissible to have intercourse with a female captive after it is established that she is not pregnant, and if she has a husband, then her marriage is annulled when she is captured", Sahih Muslim (Book of Suckling), https://sunnah.com/muslim/17 See the three hadiths it contains: Sahih Muslim 8:3432, Sahih Muslim 8:3433, and Sahih Muslim 8:3434
- Kecia Ali, "Marriage and Slavery in Early Islam", Massachussets: Harvard University Press, 2010, pp. 154-159
- Salma Saad, The legal and social status of women in the Hadith literature (PDF), p. 242, 1990, http://etheses.whiterose.ac.uk/508/1/uk_bl_ethos_443314.pdf
- Nesrine Badawi (1 October 2019). p.17. BRILL. ISBN 978-90-04-41062-6, Islamic Jurisprudence on the Regulation of Armed Conflict: Text and Context, https://books.google.com/books?id=6MC0DwAAQBAJ&pg=PA17
- William Gervase Clarence-Smith, Islam and the Abolition of Slavery, p. 27. Oxford University Press. ISBN 978-0-19-522151-0, 2006, https://archive.org/details/islamabolitionof0000clar
- Malik Mufti (1 October 2019), The Art of Jihad: Realism in Islamic Political Thought, SUNY Press. p.5. ISBN 978-1-4384-7638-4, https://books.google.com/books?id=l0SyDwAAQBAJ&pg=PA5
- William Gervase Clarence-Smith, Islam and the Abolition of Slavery, p. 22. Oxford University Press. ISBN 978-0-19-522151-0, 2006, https://archive.org/details/islamabolitionof0000clar
- Robert Gleave (14 April 2015), Violence in Islamic Thought from the Qur'an to the Mongols, p.142. Edinburgh University Press. ISBN 978-0-7486-9424-2
- William Gervase Clarence-Smith, Islam and the Abolition of Slavery, p=27–28. Oxford University Press. ISBN 978-0-19-522151-0, 2006, https://archive.org/details/islamabolitionof0000clar
- William Gervase Clarence-Smith, Islam and the Abolition of Slavery, p=28. Oxford University Press. ISBN 978-0-19-522151-0, 2006, https://archive.org/details/islamabolitionof0000clar
- William Gervase Clarence-Smith, Islam and the Abolition of Slavery, p=27-28. Oxford University Press. ISBN 978-0-19-522151-0, 2006, https://archive.org/details/islamabolitionof0000clar
- Y. Erdem (20 November 1996), Slavery in the Ottoman Empire and its Demise 1800-1909, p=26. Palgrave Macmillan UK. ISBN 978-0-230-37297-9, https://books.google.com/books?id=dyZ-DAAAQBAJ&pg=PA52
- Jarbel Rodriguez (2015), Muslim and Christian Contact in the Middle Ages: A Reader, p=2. University of Toronto Press. ISBN 978-1-4426-0066-9, https://books.google.com/books?id=z3VoBgAAQBAJ&pg=PA2
- Sean Anthony and Catherine Bronson (2016) "Did Ḥafṣah edit the Qurʾān? A response with notes on the codices of the Prophet's wives" Journal of the Interational Quranic Studies Association 1(2016) pp.93-125 (p.102)
- Quran 8:41
- "لِاحْتِمَالِ أَنْ تَكُونَ عَذْرَاءَ أَوْ دُونَ الْبُلُوغِ أَوْ أَدَّاهُ اجْتِهَادُهُ أَنْ لَا اسْتِبْرَاءَ فِيهَا"
Ibn Hajar al-Asqalani, Fath al-Bari, 9, Dar Taybah, p. 487, https://www.google.com/books/edition/%D9%81%D8%AA%D8%AD_%D8%A7%D9%84%D8%A8%D8%A7%D8%B1%D9%8A_%D8%AC_9_%D8%A7%D9%84%D9%85%D8%BA%D8%A7%D8%B2%D9%8A/YzZJCwAAQBAJ?hl=en&gbpv=1&bsq=%D9%84%D9%90%D8%A7%D8%AD%D9%92%D8%AA%D9%90%D9%85%D9%8E%D8%A7%D9%84%D9%90%20%D8%A3%D9%8E%D9%86%D9%92%20%D8%AA%D9%8E%D9%83%D9%8F%D9%88%D9%86%D9%8E%20%D8%B9%D9%8E%D8%B0%D9%92%D8%B1%D9%8E%D8%A7%D8%A1%D9%8E%20%D8%A3%D9%8E%D9%88%D9%92%20%D8%AF%D9%8F%D9%88%D9%86%D9%8E%20%D8%A7%D9%84%D9%92%D8%A8%D9%8F%D9%84%D9%8F%D9%88%D8%BA%D9%90%20%D8%A3%D9%8E%D9%88%D9%92%20%D8%A3%D9%8E%D8%AF%D9%91%D9%8E%D8%A7%D9%87%D9%8F%20%D8%A7%D8%AC%D9%92%D8%AA%D9%90%D9%87%D9%8E%D8%A7%D8%AF%D9%8F%D9%87%D9%8F%20%D8%A3%D9%8E%D9%86%D9%92%20%D9%84%D9%8E%D8%A7%20%D8%A7%D8%B3%D9%92%D8%AA%D9%90%D8%A8%D9%92%D8%B1%D9%8E%D8%A7%D8%A1%D9%8E%20%D9%81%D9%90%D9%8A%D9%87%D9%8E (see alternatively Fath al-Bari 8/67 (archive.org))
- child marriage was not only permitted by all schools of Islamic law, but a father could even compell his pre-pubescent children or his female slaves to marry someone (he could even so compell his male slaves according to Malikis and some Hanafi scholars). Marriage could even be forced upon post-pubescent virgin daughters according to the Maliki and Shafi'i schools of jurisprudence. Follow the links for details of all these points. Child marriage and forced marriage are obvious contexts in which rape would occur.
- Chapters on Marriage and Divorce is a compilation of "responses" that Ahmad ibn Hanbal and his friend Ishaq bin Rahwayh gave to various fiqh questions that people asked them. The book is really three different compilations in one: the first from Abu Dawud, the famous Hadith scholar, the second from Abdullah, Ahmad's son, and the last from al-Kausaj, one of Ahmad's students. The three different compilations were collected and translated by Susan A. Spectorsky, a retired professor at Queens College, City University of New York.
- Ruling on sexual intercourse with one's polytheistic slave-woman, Islamweb.net, November 14, 2014 (archived from the original), https://web.archive.org/web/20201227215257/https://www.islamweb.net/en/fatwa/272452/
- Khaled Abou al-Fadl, The Great Theft: Wrestling Islam from the Extremists, HarperOne, 2009, p. 255
- Sahih Bukhari 5:59:459, Sahih Muslim 8:3371, Al-Muwatta 29:95, Sunan Abu Dawud :2167, and Sahih Bukhari 3:34:432
- See Tafsir Qurtubi 24:33 in particular; see also Tafsir al-Tabari 24:33, Tafsir Ibn Kathir 24:33, and Tafsirs 24:33 in general
- Bassam Zawadi, "Does Islam Permit Muslim Men to Rape Their Slave Girls?", Call to Monotheism (archived from the original), https://web.archive.org/web/20201112021758/https://www.call-to-monotheism.com/does_islam_permit_muslim_men_to_rape_their_slave_girls_
- Hina Azam, "Sexual Violation in Islamic Law: Substance, Evidence, and Procedure" New York: Cambridge University Press, 2015, p. 104
- Kecia Ali,"Marriage and Slavery in Early Islam", Massachussets: Harvard University Press, 2010, p.119