Worthwhile Reads: Modesty Flashbacks

Modesty Flashbacks, Part 1, by Katy-Anne I got the cane in Christian school when I was five because I dared to bring a naked Barbie to school. I didn't understand why it was so wrong to bring a naked Barbie, after all, someone had given me that doll and I had no clothes for her, I usually dressed her in my dad's handkerchiefs. I felt like I was being punished for being poorer than the other girls, who all had the latest fashion clothes for their Barbie. But apparently my Barbie was immodest and … [Read more...]

On Modesty and Peer Pressure

Even though I was not technically required to, I only wore skirts. Even though my mother had good fashion sense and enjoyed buying a new dress, I wore baggy homemade dresses or oversized T-shirts with shapeless skirts (much to her consternation, I think). Why? Because doing so made me feel oh so much holier and more virtuous than everyone else.I've written before about how my friends and I drove each other to be more extreme in our desire to be as godly as we could possibly be. Well, the … [Read more...]

On Modesty and Moving the Bar

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Some time back I posted a picture of two men leering at two women in burkas. For me, this picture emphasized something I had been thinking for a long time: imposing new stricter standards of modesty just moves the bar, and once that standard becomes the new norm, the bar must be moved again.Because of how they are wired, there is no way to stop (heterosexual) men from finding women sexually attractive, or to stop them from appreciating that sexual attractiveness. Even a burka won't stop it. … [Read more...]

Worthwhile Reads: The Modesty Survey

I'd like to introduce you to something called "The Modesty Survey." It was put together by the Harris twins (brothers of Josh Harris of I Kissed Dating Goodbye fame). It is composed of dozens of questions about every aspect of clothing imaginable - bathing suit strings sticking out from under clothing, purses with straps diagonally across the front - questions submitted by 200 Christian girls and answered by 1600 Christian guys.The results? We find out things like this: 27% of respondents … [Read more...]

Worthwhile Reads: Modesty, Fear, and Exploitation

Sierra on Modesty and False Empowerment If other people can’t listen to your ideas because they’re too focused on your breasts, they are the ones disrespecting you. Changing yourself to suit them does not change their basic lack of respect for you as a person, it just satisfies their demands and causes them to stop pressuring you. That’s not empowerment, it’s just the relative absence of shaming. A Sober Second Look on How We Were Sold On Patriarchal Religion: Reason #142 In a word, fear. … [Read more...]

Feeling Judgement

I just read an interesting post called The Impact on Our Kids: Internalizing Those Judging Eyes. Even though the situation discussed here was one experienced with Islam, I found it easy to identify with. I was walking outside with my daughter last week in a neighborhood we used to live in, back when we lived a conservative Muslim life. It was a hot sunny day, and she was wearing a sleeveless t-shirt and tight pants. There was nobody out on the street except a few teenage boys playing … [Read more...]

Sierra’s Religious Fundamentalism and Sexuality Project

Sierra has just announced that she is starting a project on religious fundamentalism and sexuality, and she's looking for participants. Here is what she has to say about it: If you are interested in participating in a blog series on religious fundamentalism and sexuality, read on! Below are the questions and the guidelines for the project.  Borrowing the format of Libby Anne’s Raised Quiverfull project, I’ll be posting each question and its set of answers multiple times a week, starting June 25. … [Read more...]


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