Answered by Shaykh Amjad Rasheed
What is the ruling of reading literature containing incidental mention of sinful matters? What if there is a language benefit in doing so? Werent there similar things in pre-Islamic (jahili) poetry and other literature which the scholars paid attention to?
Walaikum assalam wa rahmatullah,
In the Name of Allah, Most Merciful and Compassionate.
It appears that this is permitted, as affirmed by our teacher, Shaykh Muhammad al-Khatib [a leading Shafii faqih and mufti, in Tarim, Yemen]. The books of grammar and other works of Arabic literature widespread among people and the scholars contain mention of some sins, and the scholars have not condemned such literature.
However, if the reader fears for themselves that they will be harmed by reading such literature, then it would be haram.
(Translated by Faraz Rabbani)