Friday, December 11, 2015

The Business of Headcoverings

From "If You Don't Stand By Muslim Women Now Then Don't Profit Off Us Later"
An article in the December 10, 2015, Forbes magazine, by Amani Al-Khatahtbeh

"While we’re dishing out MuslimGirl’s neatly streamlined numbers in pretty Powerpoint slides at shiny conference tables, quantifying in dollar signs why Muslim women’s voices are valuable, all I can really think about is how our site had to resort to publishing a crisis safety manual for Muslim women last week. All that hateful rhetoric in the media — Paris, Bernardino, now Trump — isn’t made in a void.

"The thing is, you can’t be cool with society demanding us to apologize for ISIS while also trying to compliment us on our headscarves.

"The social complacency that MuslimGirl intends to combat has real life or death consequences for Muslim women in Western societies. Our society is currently thriving off of scapegoating Islam: Muslim women quickly become the most vulnerable targets, and, yet, the fashion industry and corporations are simultaneously eager to profit off of them."

Click to read the whole article in Forbes.

"For many Muslim women, the headscarf is a symbol of resistance: against Islamophobia, against the imposition of societal expectations, against the violent erasure of our bodies. Countless women’s websites and news blogs this year have cashed in on almost patronizing modest fashion headlines, reducing Muslim women to their apparently shocking ability to dress well, rock a scarf, and look acceptable to the Western gaze. Meanwhile, a 6th grade Muslim girl was beaten up by a group of boys and called “ISIS!” in her middle school. How many women’s blogs flaunting modest fashion headlines have covered her story? Much to your delight, we can flawlessly rock a scarf with American fashion trends — but we’re still going to risk getting killed when we step out of the house."

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