Monday, March 31, 2008


Walladah Bint Mustakfi (c. 1001-1080) -

Poet. Walladah was a poet and the free spirited daughter of a Caliph. She lived in Cordoba, Spain, during its most sophisticated and tolerant period. In contrast to Christian Europe, Cordoba under the Moors housed one of the great libraries of the world. At one time it included scholarly women on its staff. In this relaxed atmosphere where women went about unveiled, Walladah was free to give mixed sex parties where she read her quite bold poetry. Economically independent and beholding to no one, Walladah had lovers but never married, which illustrates the nature of the tolerant society into which she was born. Only a few lines of Wallada's poetry remain. Yet she is considered one of the three most important female poets of the era. "My lover I offer the curve of my cheek/ And my kiss to whoever desires it."(Walladah is one of the personalities featured in Women in the Muslim World.)

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