Visiting Professor Dr.M Niaz Asadullah gives lecture on “Islam, Women and Development”

Visiting Professor Dr.M Niaz Asadullah gives lecture on “Islam, Women and Development”

by Xandelyn Racel R. Baena

The College of Arts and Social Sciences celebrating its 35th Founding Anniversary launched DisCASSion, a series of lectures that will run until the month of April.

  One of the lecture series was a whole day engagement with Dr. Asadullah, a visiting professor from the University of Malaya on the helm. In the  morning he met with the faculty members of the CASS and had a roundtable discussion on “Coaching faculty members and senior/graduate students on reviewing research literature and publication in Scopus-ISI-indexed.” He generously gave research tips to the faculty to make their research more attractive to the Scopus-ISI-indexed publications.

 In the afternoon, Dr. Asadullah did a lecture at the CED Amphitheater, attended by students and faculty of the institute. He interweaves the three concepts: Islam, Women and Development. As a professor of development economics, he said that “poverty is a common problem, its gender blind.” However, poverty for women does not necessarily begin with looking at the deprivation of income, but equates to deprivation of dignity and freedom.

 At the start of his lecture, Dr. Asadullah sounded provoking in his presentation of data about negative correlations between women and Islam. Muslim countries tend to deprive the status of their women in terms of access in the labor market, politics and social participation. His numerical data stirred strong reactions from the listeners. It then became clear that it is not the faith (Islam) that is in question,  but these patterns of women deprivation across Muslim countries do not go hand in hand with Islam. The problem is not Islam, but the structural factors that surround these countries. In Middle Eastern countries, Islamic values are often overshadowed by the “resource curse” and Arab autocracies and therefore producing a negative correlation between women and Islam.

Asadullah stressed that oil production in the Middle East has reduced female political influence since it is men who controls and dictates the production.  He said that it is the Muslim countries that have problems with women’s well being/development and not Islam. He stressed that most of these countries whose status of women is poor, are in strict adherence to their social customs and norms that determine what to be and what to do in life and which ultimately violates the notion of freedom.  Closing his lecture, Asadullah asserted that to change the lives of women is to empower them; giving them a chance to raise their voice and express their choices.

 In the open forum,  a question was raised asking which aspect should women be empowered. Dr. Asadullah strongly pronounced that it should be empowerment for women in politics. He said that with political power, women can correct and make room to empower their status in all other dimensions. Indeed, there were a lot of learning that the participants were able to take home after listening to Dr. Asadullah’s lecture. As MSU-IIT steps into world recognition as a leading university, Dr. Asadullah’s visit has put the institute into the right track.

Topics : Islam  women empowerment  Islamic Values gender and development

City Gov’t. Awards Two CBAA Students in Essay Writing Contest

City Gov’t. Awards Two CBAA Students in Essay Writing Contest

The Local Government Unit of Iligan City awarded a plaque and cash prize to Allayka A. Fowler, a BSBA Business Economics student, and Danielle M. Detera, a BS Accountancy student, on November 16, 2015 during its Flag-raising Ceremony at the City Hall. Fowler won first place and Detera came in second in the inter-school Gender and Development (GAD) Essay Writing Contest held on October 17, 2015 at the Department of Psychology Majors Room.

To form part of Iligan City’s program for women empowerment and gender equality, this was the first essay writing contest organized by the Iligan City Gender and Development Office (ICGDO) and the City Mayor’s Office in partnership with the Iligan City Youth Affairs Office and the JCI Dayang-Dayang, Inc. in association with the Department of Psychology, CASS. Additionally, the activity was to collect and show the ideas, attitude, and values of young people on the subject of women empowerment and gender equality given that media is replete with stereotype images of women as decorations, and weak, indecisive and overly emotional beings.

A total of 27 participants representing eight different schools in Iligan City namely: MSU-Iligan Institute of Technology (11), St. Peter’s College (7), Systems Technology Institute (1), St. Laurence Institute of Technology (2), Adventist Medical Center College (2), Sta. Monica Institute of Technology (2), Masters Technological Institute of Mindanao (1), and Lyceum of Iligan Foundation (1) joined the contest.

The contestants were asked to write a 600-word essay on the theme “woman of substance.”

“I thought of what makes a woman worthy to be called “woman” plus I looked back on personal experiences and thought of the change I want to see in societal mindsets,” said Fowler, when asked what her thoughts were during the contest.

“I thought of my mother and my elder sister, contemplated on their qualities and the genuine appreciation I have of their characters,” Detera added.

Topics : Gender and Development  Essay Writing Contest