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Sura 58
Aya 1

Chapter 58

The Pleaderal-Mujādilah ( المجادلة )

22 verses • revealed at Medinan

»The surah that mentions the complaint of Khawlah bint Thaʿlabah to the Prophet as The Pleader for dignity of women against the abominable practice whereby husbands estranged their wives from intimacy on false pretext. It takes its name from the phrase “pleads with you” (tujādiluka) mentioned in verse 1. The surah disallows a specific pagan divorce practice. It goes on to state that those who oppose God and His messenger, who secretly ally themselves with Satan, who lie in their oaths and make intrigues against the Prophet, will be defeated and suffer humiliation both in this world and in the next (verse 5 and verse 20), while those on God’s side will triumph (verse 22).«

The surah is also known as She Who Argued, She Who Pleaded, The Disputant, The Dispute, The Disputer, The Disputing Woman, The Pleading Woman, The Woman Who Pleads

بِسمِ اللَّهِ الرَّحمٰنِ الرَّحيمِ

Yusuf Ali: In the name of God, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.

قَد سَمِعَ اللَّهُ قَولَ الَّتي تُجادِلُكَ في زَوجِها وَتَشتَكي إِلَى اللَّهِ وَاللَّهُ يَسمَعُ تَحاوُرَكُما ۚ إِنَّ اللَّهَ سَميعٌ بَصيرٌ

Yusuf Ali

God has indeed heard (and accepted) the statement of the woman who pleads1 with thee concerning her husband and carries her complaint (in prayer) to God. and God (always) hears the arguments between both2sides among you: for God hears and sees (all things).
  • The immediate occasion was what happened to Khawlah bint Tha'labah, wife of Aws son of Samit. Though in Islam, he divorced her by an old Pagan custom: the formula was known as Ẓihār, and consisted of the words “Thou art to me as the back of my mother”. This was held by Pagan custom to imply a divorce and freed the husband from any responsibility for conjugal duties, but did not leave the wife free to leave the husband’s home, or to contract a second marriage. Such a custom was in any case degrading to a woman. It was particularly hard on Khawlah, for she loved her husband and pleaded that she had little children who she had no resources herself to support and whom under Ẓihār her husband was not bound to support. She urged her plea to the Prophet and in prayer to God. Her just plea was accepted, and this iniquitous custom, based on false words, was abolished. See also n. 3670 to 33:4.
  • For He is a just God, and will not allow human customs or pretences to trample on the just rights of the weakest of His creatures.