This article sheds light on the most influential woman religious scholar in twentieth-century Iran, Nusrat Amin (1886–1983). Contemporaneous prominent men religious scholars recognized Amin’s religious authority and expertise in Islamic sciences despite her gender. Amin’s influence was nevertheless circumscribed to some degree by gendered resistance among male ulema and a system of granting religious authority and positions that advantaged men scholars. Amin has elicited renewed interest in Iran since the 1990s, although this attention is selective. It highlights and reproduces Amin as a modern pious role model for Iranian women, a conservative in her viewpoints on gender relations, and an advocate of the veil. This selective attention worked to recuperate the traditional gender viewpoints of the Islamic Republic while facilitating demands to expand religious education opportunities for women. Primary sources include major Persian-language biographies that have appeared in Iran over the last thirty years and research from two fieldwork trips.

You do not currently have access to this content.