February 1, 2013

"World Hijab Day calls on non-Muslim women to try out life under the traditional head scarf."

BBC reports:
[Jess Rhodes, 21, a student from Norwich in the UK] was concerned about the reaction, but after eight days of wearing the headscarf she has actually been surprised by how positive it has been.

"I can't explain it really but people have been really very helpful, especially in shops," she says.... I will wear it from time to time...  I'm saying to the world, my beauty is for my family and my partner. Any woman can wear this."
So let's assume you are a woman with no religious basis whatsoever for wearing a headscarf, but you wear one because of World Hijab Day, and you find yourself receiving more respect and more deference from strangers. Rhodes says she got more help in shops, but when she talks about wearing it in the future, she doesn't refer to an interest in getting better treatment from others, but in expressing something about excluding them from her beauty. Of course, there are all sorts of clothing items that can be worn to exclude others from your beauty. Why — if expression is key —adopt an item of clothing that is read as an expression of belief in a religion that isn't yours?

100 comments:

Pogo said...

Women are strange creatures indeed, flitting from bare-breasted feminism to sharia in no time flat.

EMD said...

Wake me up when Muslims participate in Wear a Yarmulke Day.

Synova said...

Good idea to do this in February when it's so cold.

Amartel said...

Attention ladies: The state media wants you to feel comfortable about wearing a hijab.

Why so concerned, state media?

bagoh20 said...

Why?
Because she likes it. Chill.

Palladian said...

There is a bleak comfort in submission.

Palladian said...

Are men invited to participate in "World Hijab Day"? Because I've got some really lovely scarves.

Synova said...

Modesty is nice.

A friend and I were talking about a class we have together and the girl who sits in front of her is all butt-crack every day, which doesn't look good on you, no matter who you are, and no matter how young or skinny you are.

Original Mike said...

Women wearing scarves is a new thing?

Bill, Republic of Texas said...

There's a Muslim couple at the Y that uses the hot tub. She is covered from head to toe (open face) and he wears a little swim trunk that barely covers his junk.

So I guess God would be offended by seeing the woman's hair but God is OK with seeing this guys bald head, hair covered beer belly and his hairy ass.

A very strange religion.

Palladian said...

Synova, you and your friend should try tossing some coins in. Or maybe ice cubes.

EMD said...

Where's Kentucky Liz's avatar when we need it?

Balfegor said...

Re: Synova:

Modesty is nice.

Hear, hear!

They call it a "hijab," but we all know there's a perfectly good English word for what she's wearing: it's a wimple!

Bring back the wimple!

Dante said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
MadisonMan said...

Did someone tell Ms. Rhodes she should wear something in addition to the Hijab?

The Godfather said...

Aren't there any morality police to enforce wear-a-hijab day? It's not really authentic if it's voluntary.

Palladian said...

I propose "World Galvanized Metal Bucket Day".

Dante said...

After all the Gatsby stuff, it ought to be obvious. It's the symbolism. Isn't that the religious message? So she agrees with the message, and uses the symbol to express the message.

If there were a symbol for "Thou shalt not Kill," would it be OK for atheist pacifists to where them? I would think so.

Carol said...

There is a loose, open way of wearing a headscarf that looks really nice on some women. It's not hardcore Islamist though.

But even if it looked good on me (it doesn't) I don't think I could wear one now.

jacksonjay said...

My daughters went to high school with a Muslim girl who wore the hijab every day! She also wore the current fads that revealed her ample cleavage! What the Hell? Color me confused!

EMD said...

I don't think beauty exclusion is really a problem for her.

ZING!

Carol said...

I must say Jess Rhodes doesn't look good in that snug hajib, either. Too moon-faced and nunnish. Like I would be.

Jose_K said...

Muslim vigilantes:
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/law-and-order/9808539/Muslim-vigilantes-confront-Londoners-in-name-of-Islam.html

tim maguire said...

Why — if expression is key —adopt an item of clothing that is read as an expression of belief in a religion that isn't yours?

Because when you're a small-minded cookie-cutter product of conformity who fancies herself original but lacks the courage or imagination to actually be original, you'll take what's tried and true and pretend it's not simply because it's not what you normally do.

Irene said...

"[A]nd you find yourself receiving more respect and more deference from strangers. Rhodes says she got more help in shops[.]"

Maybe the strangers were nice to her because they thought she was undergoing chemotherapy.

James Pawlak said...

If I run across one of those critters I will proclaim: Mohammed of Mecca & Medina, the inventor of a criminal-terrorist ideology was a murderer, bandit, supporter of rape and wife-beating, treaty breaker and general liar and the PERVERTED sexual abuser of a nine-year-young
girl-child.

Crunchy Frog said...

"I will wear it from time to time," she says of her hijab. "I'm saying to the world, my beauty is for my family and my partner. Any woman can wear this."

She's a lesbian who doesn't want guys hitting on her.

Wonder if she knows the penalty she would be under in places where the hijab is mandatory.

Crunchy Frog said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
jacksonjay said...


James Pawlak said:

If I run across one of those critters I will proclaim: Mohammed of Mecca & Medina, the inventor of a criminal-terrorist ideology was a murderer, bandit, supporter of rape and wife-beating, treaty breaker and general liar and the PERVERTED sexual abuser of a nine-year-young
girl-child.


You left out Religion of Peace.

Seeing Red said...

...They reject the notion that women only wear hijabs at the insistence of a father or a radical member of the family.

This day, then, is about showing the world that women can choose the hijab willingly....


Ohhh, let's try this in Saudi Arabia, shall we?

traditionalguy said...

Hoodies are not wise items to wear in Florida.

Marshal said...

Not to criticize this single person, but if it becomes a trend those who want all women to wear them will increase pressure on others to wear them also.

jpg said...

Some people are just weak and submissive. This lady is one of them.

jpg said...

Some people are just weak and submissive. This lady is one of them.

traditionalguy said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Ambrose said...

What's missing is the understanding that doing something by choice - even something stupid - can be kind of interesting, but when you are forced to that same stupid thing, day after day for your entire life, it's a different thing altogeter.

Bryan C said...

"I'm saying to the world, my beauty is for my family and my partner. Any woman can wear this."

Any woman can. Many women must, or they die.

I don't know what the Jews are complaining about. These little yellow stars they're handing out are just adorable!

Inga said...

I wouldn't last one day in a hijab. Sounds like a straight jacket to me.

TMink said...

Her story is so contradictory because she is lying.

Trey

Chip Ahoy said...

I am a non Muslim woman, I should try that.

I should try this to double the respect for my gravi-tah that my new sinister goatee has gained.

Because I too am out there thinking, you know, I must announce that my beauty is for my family alone. Piss off and quit admiring me. Plus sometimes my ears get cold.

MayBee said...

Crunchy Frog- in America you'd guess partner = lesbian, but in England "partner" is used for boyfriend, girlfriend, husband, wife.

My question for her is, what kind of man wants his partner's beauty all to himself, at home?

mtrobertsattorney said...

A friend of mine who teaches high school relates that at his school there is a large group of high school boys who are always standing in the hallway before classes making all kinds of loud and lewd comments about the girls who pass by them--except when a group of Muslim girls wearing hijabs approach them. Then they fall strangely silent.

mtrobertsattorney said...

A friend of mine who teaches high school relates that at his school there is a large group of high school boys who are always standing in the hallway before classes making all kinds of loud and lewd comments about the girls who pass by them--except when a group of Muslim girls wearing hijabs approach them. Then they fall strangely silent.

Lydia said...

I think the onus should be on the BBC for its coverage of this hijab-for-a-day thing, not Jess Rhodes, the young woman featured.

She seems to be a rather confused, vulnerable person. Here's how she describes herself on her blog: "I have Asperger Syndrome, depression and scoliosis. I write to ease the depression."

And she very recently announced there that "I am now taking Wicca a lot more seriously. I used to dabble in Wicca without really committing to it fully, but now I am taking that step."

Dust Bunny Queen said...

I can't wait until they bring back Chinese foot binding. All the trendy women will swoon. Probably literally....but swoon they will.

MayBee said...

People are nice to women in Hijabs because they don't want to seem like bigots

SOJO said...

Because she's being a PC fuck, duh.

Hey Jess, you know what else works for respect in shops? A HUGE ASS DIAMOND ENGAGEMENT RING. Really.

Try it, a bit of Western Culture, Just try it and see the effect. It's amazing. It's like you have a laser beam on your hand. It's got nothing to do with protecting 'your beauty', and a lot to do with showing people that someone rich and their money (that you have access to) have your back.

It's better than some old scarf.

Because lasers.

ErnieG said...

Here is a 2003 article from Instapundit in which he discusses the origins of the hijab.

Excerpts:

In an interview in 1975 in Beirut, Sadr told this writer that the hijab he had invented was inspired by the headgear of Lebanese Catholic nuns, itself inspired by that of Christian women in classical Western paintings. (A casual visit to the Metropolitan Museum in New York, or the Louvre in Paris, would reveal the original of the neo-Islamist hijab in numerous paintings depicting Virgin Mary and other female figures from the Old and New Testament.)

Sadr's idea was that, by wearing the headgear, Shiite women would be clearly marked out, and thus spared sexual harassment, and rape, by Yasser Arafat's Palestinian gunmen who at the time controlled southern Lebanon.


You see, rape is considered a military weapon in that part of the world.

Also:

n 1981, Abol-Hassan Bani-Sadr, the first president of the Islamic Republic, announced that "scientific research had shown that women's hair emitted rays that drove men insane." To protect the public, the new Islamist regime passed a law in 1982 making the hijab mandatory for females aged above six, regardless of religious faith. Violating the hijab code was made punishable by 100 lashes of the cane and six months imprisonment.

Seeing Red said...

--"I'm saying to the world, my beauty is for my family and my partner--


This isn't the 1st time I've heard this. A teacher relayed that this is what 1 of his female muslim students told him.

OTOH, all of her beauty is in her hair? Her face is still showing?

Seeing Red said...

Ernie! I was thinking of that but my search didn't come up with that, thanks!

Seeing Red said...

And the current group of Iranian females keep pushing the envelope, making them as skimpy as possible.

Aridog said...

jacksonjay said...

My daughters went to high school with a Muslim girl who wore the hijab every day! She also wore the current fads that revealed her ample cleavage! What the Hell? Color me confused!

Just "off the boat" so to speak the girls and women wear clothing covering everything from foot to face. As time passes many of the younger ones and the children of the older ones start revealing a bit of ankle, then some calf...soon enough their wearing jeans so tight they could be paint. Next is a tighter knit shirt, then a bit of open bodice...last thing to go is the Hijab. Frequently the Hijab stays for a while as the girls know the guys are looking at the rest of their "gear", not their hair, anyway....and they get less crap from the fundamentalists that way.

Now if they're butt ugly, you can bet on full Abaya (big body tent) with Niqab (full face veil)as well as the head wrap Hijab.

ErnieG said...

Further to the discussion of the hijab, here are a series of pictures of the graduating classes at the University of Cairo.

Ann Althouse said...

"You see, rape is considered a military weapon in that part of the world."

Rape has been used as a military weapon all over the place throughout history (and presumably before history).

Ann Althouse said...

Nice avatar, Ernie.

And thanks for that old Insta-post.

mccullough said...

Technically, Ms. Rhodes is wearing a khimar, a sort of nun's wimple, as hijab usually just means the head scarf. (Hijab also refers to the dress code in general)

She could add a niqab (veil) as well, but apparently it would not evoke the hipster look she's going for.

If she really wants to get going, she could add a jilbab, which is like a caftan or robe.

Or else she could forgo the hijab or khimar (with or without niqab) and wear a chador, which is a long cloak that women cover their head and body with by clasping it in their hand.

Or she could go full bore with the burqa, which covers it all.

I'd rather she wear a bikini, but I'm just an American.



furious_a said...

Can it lead to more religious tolerance and understanding?

With the World's Touchiest Religion tolerance and understanding is a one-way street -- just ask the Copts or the Ibo.

Bruce Hayden said...

And, yet, we have seen a race to the bottom in terms of modesty for young, and sometimes not so young, women. A lot more cleavage than is really appreciated. And, shots of crotches of actresses and other beautiful people wearing short skirts but no underwear, getting out of limos. Not sure how things can go down from there, but figure that some enterprising women will figure out how.

One problem with that race to the bottom is that while women, in general, are claiming to want to be treated as people and valuable workers in the workforce, they act more and more like sex objects, flaunting their secondary sexual characteristics in a way they know will excite most of the males in their presence. And, guys are hard wired in this way, even when pretending not to notice.

So, as the standards for female dress continue decline more and more, I think more and more that women, as a group, would do better not being treated like sex objects, if they didn't act like sex objects. Modesty may make a comeback yet. We shall see.

furious_a said...

This day, then, is about showing the world that women can choose the hijab willingly....

Anyone with daughters can appreciate a little modesty on their part BUT...

Willingly donning a symbol of women's subjugation seems worse than having it forced on one by one's fundie male relatives.

Amartel said...

"World Hijab Day calls on non-Muslim women to try out life under the traditional head scarf"

Oh, what grand fun it will be!
And how does a Day call on people?

Women/girls who dress slutty and/or slobby are conforming to cultural standards just like the women/girls who are forced to wear a hijab.
But it's not all relative.
The difference is that the sluts can change their minds, change their ways, change their clothes. They have options. Not so the hijab wearers.

mccullough said...

Maybe a hijab, bikini top, and Daisy Dukes will be the next style for nubile Westerners.

TerriW said...

I thought we were supposed to shame women these days for excluding people from their beauty by being overweight. I can't keep up with the trends.

Personally, I exclude people from my beauty by being not beautiful in the first place. Cuts out the middleman.

Aridog said...

mccullough said...

Technically, Ms. Rhodes is wearing a khimar, a sort of nun's wimple, as hijab usually just means the head scarf.

I live in a 90+% Arab Muslim neighborhood, with some 30,000 or so nearby and more furhter out.

Thanks for the "khimar" identification, because I looked at what the young lady was wearing as a Hijab and the fact is I have never seen anything remotely like it among the Muslims around me, not even at weddings which I have attended.

Paul said...

Next thing you know the Muslims will want you to try out slavery, cause it is legal under muslim law.

I'd tell them to go fly a kite.

furious_a said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
madAsHell said...

She has no other way to attract attention.

What woman, in her right mind, wears those fugly photo-gray glasses? They make your face look dirty.

Shopkeepers give her extra attention because they want her to leave.

Did I mention the fugly photo-gray glasses??

furious_a said...

World Female Circumcision Day can't be far behind.

furious_a said...

Maybe a hijab, bikini top, and Daisy Dukes will be the next style for nubile Westerners.


Li'l Kim moved the needle way past that.

I'll be in my bunk.

edutcher said...

This is the Beeb pushing this?

The Beeb that is the voice of the people that slaughtered them generously at Delhi, Omdurman, Khartoum, Cawnpore, and Tell-El-Kebir?

These people have really gone dhimmi, haven't they?

Balfegor said...

Modesty is nice.

Hear, hear!

They call it a "hijab," but we all know there's a perfectly good English word for what she's wearing: it's a wimple!

Bring back the wimple!


There's Moslem nuns?

Ann Althouse said...

Nice avatar, Ernie.

And thanks for that old Insta-post.


Excellent point, Madame.

The way Sophia Loren is portrayed in "Arabesque" was no lie - 50 years ago.

rhhardin said...

Blessed are the beekeepers.

Balfegor said...

Re: edutcher:

There's Moslem nuns?

Look at ErnieG's 5:15 pm post -- the hijab is an imitation of the wimple. Calling it a "hijab" helps exoticise it, but in fact it's a kind of headgear with a long and continuous history in Christendom. The exoticisation probably helps make it more attractive to the kind of non-muslim woman who would participate in World Hijab Day, but not World Wimple Day, but there's no need to cooperate with that artificial exoticisation.

EMD said...

Are the shopkeepers nice to her because they're not sure if she's wearing a bomb-belt?

I kid, I kid.

Broomhandle said...

The same thing occurred to me EMD. The shopkeepers are nice to her because they fear her menfolk might be fuckwad Muzzie crazies who'll create all kinds of problems for them if provoked. I think that's part of the attraction of Muzzie gear for Western women. It's a kind of passive/aggressive open carry.

n.n said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
n.n said...

There is a fine line dividing reasonable and fanatic. On the fanatical side, women hide from or expose themselves to the world. Both are unreasonable. Both are liberal in their respective extremes.

Balfegor said...

Re: EMD:

You kid, but I think there is something interesting to be drawn from it -- people are more respectful of people who dress, well, respectably. The double comment from mtrobertsattorney above illustrates this even more dramatically.

I haven't ever noticed this, probably since my everyday outdoor dress runs the narrow gamut from sportcoat+slacks to suit+tie, but I have been told that men encounter a similar effect with shopkeepers when they put on a suit or a tailored jacket.

Anglelyne said...

I love it when right-thinking, progressive, mutlti-cultists re-discover the charms of modesty and reserve after spending the last half-century excoriating homegrown standards of modesty and decorum as "sexist" and repressive.

Some old white Christian fart tells you flashing your butt-crack is unladylike? Traditionalist Catholic ladies wear veils in church? Omigod sound the alarms and organize that Slut Walk! Women's freedom is endangered! Some non-Christian (and non-white) creationist fundie stoning enthusiast schmoozes some addled PC bints about the "real meaning" of modesty? Omigod, a revelation! Westerners just dooooon't understaaaAAAaaaAAAaaand why Muslims dress decorously and we have so much to learn from them because this modesty thing is like a totally new mind-blowing discovery and we're the first people in the West to discover it!

But, yah, most of these bints are confused dingbat attention whores.

TerriW said...

Bruce H. said: Modesty may make a comeback yet. We shall see.

All I know is that on seasons where we need new sizes, I have to get my order in very early to the Utah family who make the modest swimwear my daughter and I like or we are outta luck. They sell out fast.

(We don't even do it for religious reasons -- it all started when my daughter was 4 but was so tall, she was already wearing 6x. I went to try to buy a swimsuit for her and my mind got boggled at the style changes once you got up past the 6x threshold. Once I found the more modest one for her, I began to realize, Hey, wait a minute, I would feel a whole lot better in one of these, too.)

Anglelyne said...

mtrobertsattorney: A friend of mine who teaches high school relates that at his school there is a large group of high school boys who are always standing in the hallway before classes making all kinds of loud and lewd comments about the girls who pass by them--except when a group of Muslim girls wearing hijabs approach them. Then they fall strangely silent.

My daughter tells me that she and her friends get a similar "straighten up and act like gentlemen" reaction when they walk past previously lewdly jeering boys. No hijab required. What's their secret? It's a mystery.

Though I dare say in rougher schools this unwonted attitude of respect may have something to do with the fact that even adolescent baboons intuit that these girls' fathers or brothers might put an extra-legal hurtin' on them that they're not likely to receive from the kafirs' relatives.

ampersand said...

Of course you respectfully handle the hajibbibibi wearer, you never know when it will go off.

edutcher said...

forgive me, Bal, i forgot the /sarc tag.

kentuckyliz said...

veiled Carmelite nuns

Chuck said...

Even after you attempted to explain this story, Ann, it still reads like something from The Onion.

kentuckyliz said...

It's so modest

kentuckyliz said...

Really...it's so modest.

kentuckyliz said...

No, really.

kentuckyliz said...

No, I mean it, really.

kentuckyliz said...

Oh, c'mon. I'd rather see your face and hair than that.

kentuckyliz said...

It signals chastity.

kentuckyliz said...

I can keep this up if you want me to.

Another.

kentuckyliz said...

A pure, chaste woman.

kentuckyliz said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
kentuckyliz said...

Yes, this deserves respect and reverence.

kentuckyliz said...

I wore headscarves for nine months (during chemotherapy and then until my hair had grown back enough to ditch it). Now I'm too hotflashy and postmeno. If my head, neck, feet, or upper chest get too hot, it triggers major freakin' hot flashes. I am one caliente chica. So hell no. I am never going to wear one. Over my steaming hot dead body.

betamax3000 said...

If women wish to wear a chastity belt on their face who am I to judge?

Rusty said...

hijab?
Is that code for paper bag?

Aridog said...

KentuckyLiz ... probably unintentionally, you have revealed why, in my nearly all Arab-Muslim neighborhood, there is a waxing salon on every block of the main commercial drags.

You've also validated my comment to @jacksonjay that the assimilated immodesty starts at the ankles and moves upward.

Aridog said...

Rusty ...just for you.

Jerome said...

Do you suppose the First Lady will take part in this multicultural celebration?

rumah diskon said...

i will support Jess Rhodes . :)

by

busana muslim