Criticism of Islam

Criticism of Islam is broadly defined as criticism of the Islamic religion in its beliefs, principles, and/or any other ideas attributed to Islam.

Criticism of Islam has existed since Islam's formative stages. Early written disapprovals came from Christians and Jews as well as from some former Muslims such as Ibn al-Rawandi.[1] Later the Muslim world itself suffered criticism.[2][3][4] Western criticism of Islam grew after the September 11 attacks and other terrorist incidents,[5][6] in regard to its scriptures and teachings, which were claimed to be a significant source of terrorism and terrorist ideology.[7][8] As of 2014, about a quarter of the world's countries and territories (26%) had anti-blasphemy and (13%) had anti-apostasy laws or policies.[9] In 2017, 13 nations, all of which were Muslim majority nations, had the death penalty for apostasy or blasphemy.[10]

Objects of criticism include the morality of the life of Muhammad, the founder of Islam, in both his public and personal lives.[4][11] Issues relating to the authenticity and morality of the scriptures of Islam, both the Quran and the hadiths, are also discussed by critics.[12] Islam has also been viewed as a form of Arab imperialism and has received criticism by figures from Africa and India for what they perceive as the destruction of indigenous cultures.[13] Islam's recognition of slavery as an institution,[14][15] which led to Muslim traders exporting as many as 17 million slaves to the coast of the Indian Ocean, the Middle East, and North Africa,[16] has also been criticized.[17]

Another criticism focuses on the question of human rights in the Islamic world, both historically and in modern Islamic nations, including the treatment of women, LGBT people, and religious and ethnic minorities, as shown in Islamic law and practice.[18][19] Some commentators have made assimilationist arguments against Muslim immigration to the Western world.[20] Assimilationist arguments have also been made in other countries in which Muslims are a minority, such as China, India[21][22][23] and Russia.[24][25]