Sunni religious scholar Mohammed Akram Nadwi has for eight years done research for a bibliographical dictionary of hadith scholars who were women. To his surprise he has found 8,000 such women dating back some 1,400 years.
Some of these women advised scholar husbands and even issued fatwas.
Now it is up to modern Islam to reconcile this with current traditions regarding the status of Muslim women. Some, both men and women, hope this will encourage a more liberal treatment of the spiritual gifts of Muslim women.