Introduction As I sat in an airport one day, I noticed a family approaching the same waiting area as mine. This family was not the same as your ordinary family; the mother was completely covered, with only her eyes and hands showing. I immediately found myself wondering, being in America, the land of the free, did she choose to wear that or is it mandatory for her due to her religion. I also wondered if she knew that people were looking at her, possibly with the same question as my own. Women have always been thought of as something that needed to be controlled in Muslim culture. Their bodies are a source of shame that must be covered during prayer and also in the public (Mir-Hosseini 2007: 3). Veiling, done by a hijab or chador, is when women either wear a headscarf to cover themselves or they wear a veil that covers their entire body, excluding her hands and eyes (Mir-Hosseini 2007: 1; Mir-Hosseini 2003: 41; Berger 1998: 93; Smith-Hefner 2007: 390-391; Brenner 1996: 674; El Guindi 1999: 6). Veiling is used as a tool for oppression. By having women veil themselves, it enforces the control by the male run and male dominated society (Mir-Hosseini 2007: 7). Also, the punishment for women appearing without a veil transitioned as the concept of veiling was addressed, transitioning from seventy-four lashes, to being arrested and held between ten days and two months for being “immodest” women and offending public morality, or fined 50,000 to 500,000 rials (Mir-Hosseini 2007: 8). The oppression of veiling is perpetuated through the thought that it is a woman’s religious duty to wear one, condemning foreigners and women in society if they refuse. Although it is a tool for oppression, there was resistance the oppression. In ... ... middle of paper ... ...eiled Woman: Irigaray, Specularity, and the Islamic Veil." In Diacritics 28.1. Pp. 93-119. Brenner, Suzanne. 1996 "Reconstructing Self and Society: Javanese Muslim Women and "The Veil.”” In American Ethnologist 23.4 (1996): 673-97. El Guindi, Fadwa. 1999 Veil: Modesty, Privacy and Resistance. UK: Berg. Oxford Najmabadi, Afsaneh 2000 “(Un)Veiling Feminism.” In Social Text. Pp. 29-54. Duke University Press. Mir-Hosseini, Ziba. 2003 "The Conservative-Reformist Conflict Over Women's Rights in Iran." In International Journal of Politics, Culture & Society 16.1. Pp. 39-51. Mir-Hosseini, Ziba. 2007 "The Politics and Hermeneutics of Hijab in Iran: From Confinement to Choice." In Muslim World Journal of Human Rights 4.1 Smith-Hefner, Nancy J. 2007 "Javanese Women and the Veil in Post-Soeharto Indonesia." In The Journal of Asian Studies 66.02 Pp. 389-420.
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Professor Leila Ahmed, active Islamic feminist, in her article “Reinventing the veil” published in the Financial Times assumes that there is a connection between “advancement” and veiling, which means that unveiled women are advanced and vice versa. In addition, she supports that it led to increasing rate of violence. She questions why women wear veil, that is considered as “symbol of patriarchy and women’s oppression”. However, research changed her position towards wearing veil. Firstly, she states that wearing veil was essential for women, because it could be beneficial and influence to how people treat women, in terms of job, marriage and free movement in public. Secondly, her assumption was explained while interviewing women, who stated
One of Sultana Yusufali’s strongest arguments in “My body is my own business” is her scrutinization of the exploitation of female sexuality. Initially Yusufali writes about the injudicious individuals that assume she is oppressed by her hijab. Thereafter, she describes them as “brave individuals who have mustered the courage to ask me about the way I dress”. Moreover, Yusufali’s word choice is intriguing as she utilizes the word “brave” when laymen hear this word they habitually associate the aforementioned with heroic, valiant and courageous. Consequently, Yusufali ensues to comprise her opinions on the hijab and how it carries a number of negative connotations in western society. Furthermore, Yusufali proceeds to strike on the importance
For some women wearing a veil is not something that is forced on them but rather a choice of their own. Martha Nussbaum and Maysan Haydar are both authors that try to explain their reasoning that veiling isn't an oppressive tool used against women. Martha Nussbaum's article “Veiled Threats”, is a political and philosophical take on why banning the burqa is a violation of human rights. On the other hand Maysan Haydar’s article “Don’t Judge a Muslim Girl by Her Covering”, is a more humorous and personal take on why veiling shouldn't be as judged or stereotyped. Though Nussbaum and Haydar have equal goals this essay is being used to understand the main argument, claims and whether or not each article has any weaknesses.
Andoni, Lamis. "Iran's new activists seek life for women beyond the veil. (cover story)." Christian
Muslims, Sikhs, and many other religious affiliations have often been targeted for hate crimes, racial slurs, and misfortunate events. We are all different in our own ways some are good and some are bad yet one event changes everything for everyone affiliated with the group. The book The Politics of the Veil by Joan Scott a renowned pioneer in gender studies gives a detailed and analytical book of about the French views towards the Muslim females in France during 2004. The author talks about why the French governments official embargo of wearing conspicuous signs is mainly towards the headscarves for Muslim girls under the age of eighteen in public schools. The main themes of book are gender inequality, sexism, and cultural inequality historical schools used in the book are history of below, woman’s history, cultural history, and political history. In this essay, I will talk about why Joan Scotts argument on why the French government’s ban on wearing conspicuous signs was
Shah, tells a story about a woman and her journey after the hijab. She started off by saying that her dreams that she had were different from the typical stay-at-home Pakistani woman, but her dreams had to change a bit when she was 18 and had an arranged marriage. She was able to go to college and her and her husband became full-time workers, but when their son turned seven she started to reflect on her life. She begins studying Islam and after 12 years of marriage, she decided that this wasn’t how she wanted to live. She felt as if she was living the life of a hypocrite and did not want to lose herself or her son in the process. She began getting involved in her religion and deciding to wear a hijab. The hijab opened her eyes to things that she wouldn’t have done if she didn’t start getting involved in her faith and wearing her hijab. Her hijab gave her strength and a voice she never knew she had.
People who see women as “second-class” or as an “object”, when they fail to realize that the reason that people continue to be on this world is because of a woman. Document #4 is a picture of the former president of Iran, Ruhollah Moosavi Khomeini, saying that he is looking to take Iran back 1400 years to the time of Rasool’ Allah, who is the Islamic god. During those times women were treated even worse than now. Document #3 is an article titled “Behind the Veil”, which speaks of Muslim women who have a religious commitment and their reasonings to why they wear veils. Many years ago the Shah tried to westernise the Middle East. People who don't really like change, like to be independent, or have specific beliefs felt as if their Islamic identities were being threatened. Some women had stopped wearing burqas, which lead to oppression, while on the other hand, some women had been subject to prejudice for wearing them. Women’s rights have never been favored in the middle east. In the Middle East there is a justice system called, Jirga, which is an assembly of leaders, who are all male, that make decisions by consensus and according to the teachings of Islam. This justice system is never in favor of women, and they see women as objects to trade. The Jirga believes that women can't go out without a male figure, can’t really be educated, don't have a voice, or that women are an equivalent to men. Document #8 speaks of women specifically in Saudi Arabia not being able to drive. It quotes “The vast majority of women do not drive in [Saudi Arabia] and there remains much opposition to female drivers.” A 25 year old Saudi Arabian man said “I think women driving is the key to a lot of things”. Basically saying that women shouldn't be allowed to drive because women in the Middle East will be thinking that they can go or do whatever they want. Then he proceeded to compare women driving, to how women
villages, women rarely wear the burka for villages in Afghanistan are organized into kin-oriented areas, and the veil needs wearing only when a woman is among men from outside of her kin group. A rural woman most often puts on a burka for travel, especially to cities. The veil was never the nightmare American feminists make it out to be. In a world where satisfaction in life is predicated on the honor, strength, and unity of the kin group, the veil makes sense. Despite that the oppressive impositions of the Taliban have rightly been abolished, the United States should not to be in the business of browbeating Muslim women out of their veils, much less reforming the Middle Eastern kinship system, and instead, people need to encourage the separation of traditional Muslim family practices from the political ideology of Islamic
The veil is generally classified into two types; the hijab, and the niqab/burqa. To differentiate between the two, the hijab is the veil that covers the head, and the niqab/burqa is the veil that either covers the face excluding the eyes, or covers the complete face. Some claim that the covering of the complete face is an obligation within the Islamic faith, except she who is in the state of Hajj, or Prayer. In a hadith stated by Abu Dawood in his Sunan, about Islamically accepted clothing “^A'ishah, Ummul Mu'minin, (the most knowledgeable woman in the Muslim nation), narrated that when her sister Asma', the daughter of Abu Bakr, entered upon the Messenger of Allah, (peace be upon him), wearing thin clothes, the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him), turned his attention from her and said which means: “O Asma', when a woman reaches the age of menstruation, she is not allowed to show of herself except this and this”, and he pointed to her face and hands.” (Hassan, 2004) In this authentic hadith, it is evident that the Muslim female is not obligated to cover the face, as this judgment was not specified by the Prophet for the state of Prayer and hajj only.
Lila Abu-Lughod’s article titled, “Do Muslim Women Really Need Saving?” takes a closer look at the problematic ethnocentric approach many have when trying to gain an understanding of another culture that may be foreign to that individual. In this analytical paper, Lughod looks at women in Islam, specifically the treatment of women and how it might be utilized as a justification for invading into a country and liberating its people. The country Lughod refers to in her article is Afghanistan, and Lughod points out the misunderstanding from the people to the Bush administration like First Lady Laura Bush who believed that intervention was necessary to free women from the captivity of their own homes. It is important to consider the role that different lenses play into all of this, especially when one’s lenses are being shaped by the media. Depictions of covered women secluded from society leave a permanent image in the minds of many, who would then later support the idea of liberation. This paper will discuss that the practice of using propaganda when referring to the lifestyle in the Middle East is not exclusive to the U.S; rather it has been utilized throughout history. Additionally, we will take a closer look on the importance of symbols, such as veils in this case; help to further emphasize the cause to liberate. Finally, we will analyze Lughod’s plea towards cultural relativism and away from liberal imperialism.
There are many different views towards Muslim choice of clothing especially wearing the veil. “I wear it believing it is necessary, but someone else can be wearing it believing that she is doing something extra” said Hamna Ahmed. One of the many reasons a Muslim can be wearing the veil are their own personal decisions too. Hamna has been wearing it for seven years now, despite her mother and three of her four sisters staying uncovered. Socially this causes an issue with the meaning of the veil and conflict with other groups. With many different consumptions of religion, what it means, what is considered to be practicing and what is not can lead to negative misunderstandings. Ultimately the decisions are up to the individuals although; there is likely to be misinterpretation between the meaningfulness of religion to family and society. On an even bigger scale of things this could also impact society and it...
299). The study consisted of having in-depth personal interviews to share their experiences of being a Muslim American woman (Anderson Droogsma, 2007, p. 300). Veiling to these women was a way of freedom while also having a Muslim identity (Anderson Droogsma, 2007, p. 301). It was also a source of behavior control, to not be sexually objectified, a way of commanding respect from others and even a source of checking their own behavior (Anderson Droogsma, 2007, p. 301). One of the women interviewed said, veiling to her was a way to feel connected to other Muslim woman who veil (Anderson Droogsma, 2007, p. 302). Veiling can be a way to feel connected to your religion and God as well as being connected to those who practice the same faith, it can be considered an act of membership. Many of the women interviewed noted they have been removed from planes, been treated unfairly, and have had strangers shout at them all for just being Muslim and being more visibly recognized from veiling (Anderson Droogsma, 2007, p. 303). This is an example of how media can affect the general population. When the media only shows radicals and compares all Muslims to being terrorist or dangerous they are actually putting Muslim people at risk of being assaulted in public. Muslim woman in particular are more at risk for being assaulted as they are more identifiable. So while veiling can be a source of empowerment and freedom for women it is a double-edged sword because it also puts them at further risk of being