Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Deconstructing the‘Niqab-is-cultural’ myth

It is often said that the face-veil has its origins in pre-Islamic, that it is “merely” a cultural practice with no real basis in Islam, and hence, an unnecessarily restrictive and uncomfortable manifestation of one’s faith. As the number of Muslim women who wear the face-veil in the public sphere increases, so does the frequency and intensity of the ideological, verbal and sometimes even physical attacks on them. Speaking from the point of view of a researcher who is looking up this topic for a forthcoming book on the status of the face-veil in Islam, and the varied experiences and insight of the women who choose to wear it; and as someone who wears the face-veil myself, I feel compelled to share my findings.

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