What is the ruling on a woman working as a broadcaster in radio and television?.
Islam brought many guidelines to protect society from fitan (tribulation and temptation) and moral decline. Undoubtedly women’s going out of their homes and mixing with men and speaking softly to them whilst wearing their finest adornments are all among the greatest causes of fitan. Concerning this the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “I have not left behind me any fitnah more harmful to men than women.” Narrated by al-Bukhaari (5096). And the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “Beware of this world and beware of women, for the first fitnah (trial) among the Children of Israel had to do with women.” Narrated byMuslim (2742).
If we examine reality we will become even more certain of the truth of what the Messenger (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said, who did not speak on the basis of whims and desires but was given Revelation. Nations and societies – Islamic and non-Islamic – whose women went out of the home and mixed with men gained nothing from that but evil, moral decline and a lot of illegitimate children.
Recent statistics show that for the first time in history the rate of illegitimate births in Britain has surpassed that of births that occurred within the bounds of marriage, and this is a lesson for those who pay heed.
In America statistics show that between 70 and 90% of female employees have committed zina. Al-Da’wah magazine, issue no. 1783.
Some wise men warned against that, but nobody has enough wisdom to listen and learn. The famous English writer, Lady Cooke, said in the Echo newspaper:
The more mixing there is, the more illegitimate children there are. It is no secret that this is a great calamity for women. O fathers, do not be tempted by a few pennies that your daughters may earn when working in factories and the like, when you know how they are going to end up. Teach them how to keep away from men as statistics tell us that calamities resulting from fornication increase when there is more mixing between men and women. Don’t you see that most of the mothers of illegitimate children are those who work in factories or as servants in houses, and those women who are more exposed to men? Were it not for doctors who give prescriptions to cause abortions, we would have seen many times more illegitimate children than the numbers we see now.
al-Islam Rooh al-Madaniyyah by Mustafa al-Ghalaayeeni (p. 212)
Islam enjoins on women that which will best protect their chastity and protect society from that which may harm it. For example, it forbids speaking out loud in front of men who are non-mahrams, unless there is an urgent need for that.
In congregational prayer, if the imam makes a mistake, men should draw attention to it by saying tasbeeh, and women by clapping, so that they will not speak out loud in the gathering of men, even though they are engaged in an act of worship that is the greatest act of worship in Islam.
The woman who is in ihraam for Hajj or ‘Umrah should not say the Talbiyah out loud, rather it should be at a level where only her female companions can hear her.
Undoubtedly, working as a broadcaster is absolutely contrary to that, because thousands or hundreds of thousands of men who are non-mahrams can hear her, without there being any urgent need for that.
We have seen and heard female broadcasters presenting the news and presenting programs on sports and economics and religion. What is the need for that? Aren’t there men who can do this job better?
If we look at a woman’s work as a broadcaster on television, we will see that it involves a number of things that are contrary to sharee’ah:
Mixing with non-mahram men, such as the cameraman, director, producer and others who work with her; she may often end up being alone with one of them.
The need to uncover her face, with makeup and adornment which is the finest it can be. Allaah says of old women (interpretation of the meaning): “And as for women past childbearing who do not expect wedlock, it is no sin on them if they discard their (outer) clothing in such a way as not to show their adornment” [al-Noor 24:60]. So how can it be permissible for a young woman to appear with full adornment before hundreds of thousands of non-mahram men?
Many of them make their speech soft, and all of them have beautiful voices – which is one of the main reasons why they are chosen to be broadcasters. A woman’s beautiful voice is a cause of fitnah, so how about if she also makes it soft and alluring? Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning): “then be not soft in speech, lest he in whose heart is a disease (of hypocrisy, or evil desire for adultery) should be moved with desire” [al-Ahzaab 33:32].
Shaykh Saalih al-Fawzaan (may Allaah preserve him) said:
It is not permissible for a woman to address men who are not her mahrams except in cases of necessity, and with a voice which is not attractive and she should not speak to them any more than is necessary. End quote.
Fataawa al-Mar’ah al-Muslimah (1/432).
Shaykh Ibn ‘Uthaymeen (may Allaah have mercy on him) was asked:
Is it permissible for a woman to work as a broadcaster whose voice is heard by non-mahrams?
Women in broadcasting undoubtedly mix with men and may stay alone with a man in the studio, and this is undoubtedly wrong and it is haraam. It is proven that the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “No man should be alone with a woman.” This is not permissible at all. Moreover it is well known that a woman who works in broadcasting strives to make her voice beautiful and makes it soft and alluring. This is also something which must be avoided because of the fitnah involved. Among men there are both young and old who could do the job. And a man’s voice is stronger and clearer than that of a woman. End quote.
Fataawa al-Mar’ah al-Muslimah (1/433, 434)
And Allaah knows best.