Islam: In the U.S.: Freer, But Not Friedan

The debate over Rana Irfan's frequent trips back home to India took years to resolve. She enjoyed them, but her husband Kareem found them unnecessary. Eventually the issue was resolved in Kareem's favor, as are many between them. Their marriage, says Rana, 37, a spirited and sophisticated native of Bombay, is based on "consultation," but in the end, "someone has to take charge. That is my husband." It says as much in the Koran.

Superficially, American Muslim women are living out the classic immigrant-socialization process, with time logged in the U.S. serving as the great liberalizer. Sociologists describe their increasing demand...

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