Raquel Evita Saraswati – About



Raquel Evita Saraswati is an American Muslim activist who focuses primarily on issues related to the status of women and girls in Muslim-majority societies and communities.

She works to eradicate crimes  honor and gender-based violence (including female genital mutilation), end forced and child marriages, and protect the separation of religion and state.

Raquel has published in various papers and journals, including Publico, Portugal’s largest daily, Aquila Style (a cosmopolitan Muslim women’s magazine published Indonesia, Malaysia and Brunei), and others. She has lectured in North America and Europe on issues like gender-based violence and minority rights. She has been interviewed in publications like The Root, International Business Times, Salon, and others.

In 2007, Raquel received the prestigious Colin Higgins Youth Courage Award, granted to “those individuals who have endured overwhelming hostility and hate, yet have handled themselves with the utmost grace.”

In 2010, Raquel received a Durga Award at the 6th annual San Diego IndieFest. The Durga Awards are presented annually to “outstanding women who dedicate their lives to healing communities.” Raquel is the first woman under age 30 to receive this award.

Click here to learn about Raquel’s project, The Adalah Initiative, which is still in its earliest stages. Please also check out DoubleBind Magazine, where she has been invited to be a contributor.

Click here to follow her on Twitter, and email her at raquelevita@raquelevita.com

“Another world is not only possible, she’s on the way. And, on a quiet day, if you listen very carefully – you can hear her breathe.”

– Arundhati Roy


Tags: Raquel Evita Saraswati Biography | Who is Raquel Evita Saraswati | Raquel Saraswati | Raquel Evita | Raquel Saraswati Islam | Raquel Evita Islam | Raquel Saraswati Muslim | Muslim Feminists | Human Rights 

55 thoughts on “Raquel Evita Saraswati – About

  1. You do rock – you are a rock. But I want more of the rock. I check every day for new post and I get disapointed. Come on Raqi, start writing – you are not banned in Turkey for nothing, you know.

  2. Asalaamu Alaikum,

    Sister I have a press release about Islamic Introductions, a Muslim Matchmaking Service that I founded. http://www.islamicintros.com. Insha’Allah I would like to send it to you to post. I think your readers will find the information very useful.

    Please let me know where I can send it.

    Ma Salaama

  3. I’ve been active for awhile; but just started blogging. Interested in reading more about you. Assalaamu alaykum,


  4. Assalamu`alaikum Sis Raquel,

    I just wanted to leave a comment here telling you how much I admire what you do and the courage you have masha`Allaah. I agree with what you said on the Hijab Blog about homosexuality, I am so glade someone else shares my opinions and tolerance. I didn`t want to leave another “fire-breathing” comment there because it seems like a blog about hijab has exploded into the religious police?! Anyways masha`Allaah and alHumdulilaah on your efforts I wanted you to know I totally support your effort and the things you are doing!

  5. Yo, She never said anything about Homosexuality on that site, some catholic lady did.

    Anyway! Real nice blog, I’ll be reading this on the regular. You’re very insightful and informative. Look forward to reading all the posts:)

  6. as salam aleykoum sis
    you introduce yourselve as a scholar
    so i would like to ask in which university or college you gratuated from, and in which fiel you are scholar
    jazakallah ou kheiryan

  7. please read the story of LOT. It is in the Qur’an. It speaks about how Allah (swt) destroyed the homosexuals. A3oothou Bilallahi min ash-shaytan ar-rajeem. Muhammad (pbuh) clearly said that Homosexuals are cursed. Subhanallah, Homosexuality is not normal.. and just because i say that, it doesnt mean im closed-minded. Im a Muslim and I believe what the Quran and my messenger tell me… Homosexuality was not accepted by our messenger and therefore shoudln’t be by us.

    1. The Qu’ran never talked about homosexuals! First of all in Lot, men were raping Angels … Raping! Rape is a crime whether in heterosexual or homosexual relationships! Also, it mentions corruption and greediness! I find interesting that you think you qualify as a Muslim yet your intolerance stink high heavens!

  8. salam. Nice to actually know you when I browsed about islamic feminists in wikipedia. I really appreciate your effort, but the only thing that kinda disappointing is that you’re “anti”-Hamas. I think that Hamas is the one who actually really fight for the Palestinians rights to live. It is very acceptable for Hamas to struggle military if we heard about what happened on the Sabra and Shatila massacre 1982.
    Btw, once again, nice to know you. I’m a muslimah from Jakarta, Indonesia.

  9. RAQIIII! Thanks for sending me to your blog!!! girl you were so awesome in high school and you’re still so active and inspiring. Keep in touch missy. 😛

  10. You are an amazing woman who humbles herself with the grace that God has given you.You were created for a purpose and as a Muslim woman have a powerful voice.THANK YOU FOR YOUR INSPIRATION!

  11. Asalaamu alaikum wa rahmatullahi wa baraktuhu

    Im another amatuer blogger here (Jannahdreams.blogspot.com) and Ive just stumbled across your blog. Subhanallah – you do some amazing things it seems…

    Keep doing what your doing – you truly are an inspiration.. if only there were mpre sister with your passion and drive inshAllah

    Ma salaama

  12. Raquel mashAllah you’re amazing!
    I aspire to be a human rights lawyer and activist and reading yor blog gives me a lot fo inspiration. Could you hopefully tell me a little bit how you reached this point in your life?
    Great work on here, best of luck in doing what you do.

  13. Salam alaykum,I was impressed until I looked closer and saw that some of the sites you prmote are againest Islam i.e Muslims againest Sharia !!! There can not be such a thing. Learn your deen. Allah (swt) is not unjust-The law is not outdated though the implimentation by Muslims maybe unjust there is a difference and I do not see how these sites are created by muslims who have any knowlegde and it is a shame someone like yourself promote them.

  14. Assalamualaikum…
    insya 4JJ Rahmah and Hidaayah 4JJ will always with you my sister, If you feel exhausted, remember how hard Rasulullah Muhammad (blessed by HIS name) never tired in teaching islam, if you do some mistake, istighfar, learn more, and if possible make it right, if not consider it as a lesson. If you feel already done many thing, then look at the sea, your deeds and knowledge is only like a glass of water compared to the sea. Allahualam Bishawab 😀 Never give up to the last breath, never ending struggle 😉 🙂


  15. ***Hi mrs Raquel Evita Saraswati ***

    ***** *******

    **** ****

    ** **



    you have an individual personality
    thanks a lot for your attention
    you are more dynamic and artist in influence
    ,kindness and master in visual learning
    ultimate bliss bliss bliss for you

  16. Dear Raquel Evita
    You confuse me. You seem to be doing good work in helping the muslims progress into the 21st century, but why don’t you honour your own femininity?
    You wear fashionable hidjab like the new breed of Sharia-Babes that has appeared these last couple of years in western countries.
    Why not go all the way and join proud women of the world, who are not ashamed of their hair?
    I cannot respect women who submit to the male claim that women are dangerous and must be covered in order for the muslim man to control his sexual urges. I just don’t get it.

  17. “hey yo”:

    You are both:

    1 – Talking smack about someone


    2 – edging near to committing takfir (google it)

    …both of which are haram. Watch your own soul.

    1. Your right on one account but saying something is halal that our prophet said was haram is kuffer so I’m not claiming anything. We all need to check are hearts we live in interesting times and going against the ijma of the uluma on homosexuality is a dangerous move. Asalamu alykum wa rahmatullah

  18. “Another world is not only possible, she’s on the way. And, on a quiet day, if you listen very carefully – you can hear her breathe.”

    – Arundhati Roy

    I think it is you that Arundhati heard breathing. Hope your breath refreshens the world for a very very long time.

  19. Salam alikoum, I just know about you miss and i am so proud of you your the mirror of muslimat in USA I wish to know you better and I’m supporting you for every step you gonna take to clear the image of ISLAM.
    best wishes

    jamila yaya oudray

  20. My point is simple (as in, not complex): honor killings existed long before Islam was given to us as a religion and, therefore, have NOTHING to do with Islam. So, the goal…your goal should be to distinguish Islam from the practice of honor killings. The same applies to female mutilation. I have a daughter and I DARE some bastard to even PRETEND that he going to mutilate her. That will be the next-to-the-last thought he’d think….

    1. Salaams “Justin Case” from StopIslamaphobia.Blogspot.Com:

      Thank you for your comment. I agree that part of the strategy necessary to fight these practices is to continue to stress the fact that they are not native to Islam. That is indeed something I do on a regular basis. This must happen on conjunction with legal and other social efforts to combat these abuses against women and girls.

      If you are familiar with the body of my work, you’ll see that while my focus is on the rights of Muslim women and girls, I have either discussed or intervened to prevent several cases of non-Muslim honor violence. For example, one of my most recent assignments for MEMINI was to write the memorial of a Sikh girl who was brutally killed by her father.

      While it is uncomfortable, it is also true that many who commit these crimes do so in the name of Islam. THEY believe – no matter how much you and I may object – that they have religious justification for this barbarity. In some cases, their own governments and religious leaders enable them. We, as Muslims devoted to protecting women and girls, must be relentless in our zero-tolerance policy for violence against women and girls.

      Thank you for sharing that you are fiercely protective of your daughter. Given how many emails I receive from young Muslim girls whose fathers don’t feel the same way, I am especially grateful when men like you speak out. I know many, many Muslim men who would protect their daughters at all costs. We need you speaking out.

      God bless,

      ”The most perfect man of religion is he who excels in character. The best among you is he who gives the best treatment to his womenfolk.” – The Prophet Muhammad, as narrated by Al-Tirmidhi

  21. … You have a plot to try to distort people’s view of Islam. Being critical to some bad practices committed by some Muslims (practices which is not approved by Islam) and then mixing this with your own views that has nothing to do with Islam. Some ppl like you use Islam to their benefits. When marginalized due to lack of any skills, you wanna have some exposure in media to sell books and talks! You are claiming to be a Muslim but you are practicing your own form of Islam (like other proggies). May Allah give you as much as you carry of the true Islam in your heart!!!!

    1. Who are you to judge? A wise young Muslim woman has told me more than once during our brief acquaintance , “And Allah invites to the Home of Peace and guides whom He wills to a straight path.” (10:25)

  22. You are absolutely beautiful and I love what you stand for! It’s an honor that you will wear the IDILVICE Wonder Woman Tunic Dress! ❤ Thank you…

  23. BOOoooo ! Just kidding ,Oke i just tried to Initiate a dialogue excuse my Unorthodox manners .I enjoy Flirting with a Beautiful lady as any other man ,But some times you gota call it as it is ,i have problem accepting the way you look at the world as isolated remote individual acts of Muslim fanatics just dream of violence in the night and commit em in the day .You say Syria and IRan and Conspiring to kill their own people all of a sudden after 10 years of asad;s reign ? .You say Somalia is a place where random funny men are killed outa the blue for no reason ,and i could only imagine what you gots to say about Burma .
    I went through All the trouble to just acknowledge that i was a bit on the angry side to see all the Muslims out their being so gullible and playing in the hands of the “THAT WHO SHALL NOT BE NAMED (No i am not referring to Lord voldimord or whatever)” .IF you are ready to publish some thing you must be ready to defend it .Wsalam !

  24. […] About: “Raquel Evita Saraswati is an American Muslim activist  and writer. Raquel focuses primarily on issues related to the status of women and girls in the Muslim world and in Islamic communities in the West.  Raquel is a vocal advocate for religious reform, freedom of speech, and equal rights for women and girls. She works to eradicate honor and gender-based violence (including female genital mutilation), end forced and child marriages, and protect the separation of religion and state.” (x) […]

  25. I just saw you on Huckabee and I thought you did a wonderful job. Even though I’m athiest I think people like your self show what real islam is all about and you speak out against whats wrong. I personally feel Obama should be doing a lot more on this issue then on idiotic issues like Russia or Ukraine. May peace continue to be on you and continue to do what you do 🙂

  26. Dear Raquel,
    I am a Christian American. I’m so moved by you, and your wonderful representation of how beautiful I believe Islam to be. You inspire me to help you create a more peaceful world. You are doing such great work! Keep it up! I am now officially following you. I watched the documentary on tv today and was blown away by your voice and passion! Thank you from the bottom of my heart!
    Salam and Peace-

  27. I am a white American woman, born and raised in California. My husband was born and raised in Egypt, where we met. Even with our different religions, and different cultural backgrounds, We are happily married, and we both support you, and your work Raquel. We both believe more men need to get involved in women’s rights, and speak up about the abuse and torture. How we get more men to speak up and fight for our women, and children is still a mystery to my husband, and I. My husband has always said Men need to cherish women, fight for women, protect women, and love women; We women are all queens. We need to have men like my husband, who believe as my husband does, in all Countries around the world to stand up, and fight with you. You are a wonderful, intelligent, sweet woman, and we both wish you well. Let no one stop you Raquel. Your voice is being heard, all around the world. And you are so very right.

  28. I watched fox news last night and I thought you were wonderful.keep standing up for what is right.I post alot on facebook and tell the truth about radical muslims, and sharia. I think how women are treated under sharia is herendous.that woman Kristine baker was decieving.when asked about muslims that woman talked about how young muslims rise up!!!!! The west has alot yo worry about. Hope to see you again!!!!!#

  29. In my opinion you are a Munafiq. The Almighty knows the best and he is the only judge. I just can’t think anyone who really knows Islam would connect the mass murderers and the terrorist with Islam. Islam has nothing to do with their actions. It is about their greed and evilness. Most of their victims are Muslims. Recently per the US state department data about 90% of the people who were killed by the terrorists in the past 5 years were Muslims. KKK did not represent the Christian faith. These lunatics will not represent Islam either. It is a free world. You can continue your project to confuse people about Islam. You will have what you earned for on the day of Judgment.

    1. “Ahmad”:
      I challenge you to provide me with a direct and complete quote of me blaming Islam. Good luck!

      And as far as you thinking I’m a munafiq and what you seem to think I’ll face on the day of judgment, I wouldn’t hold your breath waiting for me to be concerned with your opinion.

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