Today women are enjoying high place in our society because Islam has given them great respect. In the near past women were considered inferior to men. They were debarred from taking part in social life. Their sphere of activities was limited to domestic work. Up to the 19th century it was believed that women were the servants of the homes of their husbands. In those days women were not allowed to take part in political and social life and administration. Rousseau the French philosopher who never married once said The dignity of woman consists in being unknown to the world her glory is the esteem of her husband her pleasure the happiness of her family.
Quite recently women have come to take more and more prominent part in many spheres of life In some respects they have excelled men. In sports intellectual and artist pursuits in office and industry they have set a new record of honesty and efficiency. They have succeeded marvelously as teachers and nurses goldsmith the famous poet and writer made a complaint two centuries ago Women famed of their valour their skill in politics or their learning have left the duties of their own sex in order to invade the privilege of ours. This is what the women are doing today. Now women are enjoying that place in society. Which they could never think of it past.
There is particularly no field where women are not competing with men. In professions outdoor life and law they claim equality with men. In business trade industry in the learned professions in politics administration, scientific research literary and artistic activities. Eve is making herself felt everywhere. They are police and military officers. They are working as sale girls as air hostesses and as clerks and steno typists. They are turning out men from the posts of personal secretaries. As the days pass we have to get more and more used to the idea of seeing women working side by side of men riding driving, flying, playing even fighting. Even in Pakistan we have women athletes writers, leaders, administrators. They are fast discarding purdah and taking to active outdoor life. Law has given a woman a status equal to that of man. In nearly every democratic country women have the right to vote. Not only this now women got a chance to become the head of he state. The selection of Benazir Bhutto as Prime Minister twice in a great example of women's place in society. Many other women are also serving at key posts.
Many thinkers including most of the Muslims do not like their idea of woman liking an active part in public life and in the professions. They argue that biologically woman's function is different from man's she has to be a mother. Women are not suitable for every job. They are too delicate to perform arduous duties of life. The real greatness of a woman lies in her role as mother. It is rightly said the hand that rocks the cradle rules the world. The mother who can bring up the right sort of children is really a great benefactor of society. Islamic society gives a very respectable position to woman. The Holy Prophet has said "Verily the paradise lies under the feet of your mother".