Malalagate, Patriotism, and Disingenuous Agendas

Art by Eiynah (@nicemangoes).

Last week, Pakistani education activist Malala Yousafzai was declared a co-winner of the coveted Nobel Peace Prize, along with activist Kailash Satyarthi. Since then there have been numerous articles, support pieces and critiques addressing her win, and the expected conspiracy theories. The announcement even reheated a discussion on the validity and relevance of the Nobel Peace Prize itself.We have covered Malala a few times on MMW. Merium has written of the media frenzies that have engulfed … [Read more...]

South Africa’s Open Mosque : Media, Feminist Critiques and “Unopen” Mosques.

Praying at Masjid ul Islam, Johannesburg.

The past month has been controversy ridden for the South African Muslim community, as news of the inauguration of the ‘Open Mosque’ in Cape Town has forced Muslims to tackle issues of gender equality, sexual orientation and religious freedom.Community radio stations, national broadcasters, newspapers and social media have been abuzz with news of the Open Mosque, covering everything from the protests and backlash against such an idea and death threats against the founder, to the alleged clo … [Read more...]

Why Major Mariam Al Mansouri, the First Emirati Woman F-16 Pilot, Is Not My Hero

[Source].

On September 23, an American-led campaign was launched to attack different targets that belong to the Islamic State in Iraq and Levant, referred to as ISIL. A number of Arab countries announced their participation in the campaign, among them Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Jordan.Two days later, FOX News discussed the participation of Emirati Major Mariam Al Mansouri in the fight against ISIL. In a video posted on September 25, one presenter was joking and asking whether Al … [Read more...]

Muslim Women in Sports Media: Is It Still Progress if No One Cares?

Egypt’s national women’s basketball team. [Source].

On September 16, 2014, basketball’s international governing body, FIBA, announced it would be allowing headcoverings during competitive play for a trial period. It stopped short, however, of permanently lifting its ban on hijabs, turbans and yarmulkes worn by basketball players. Stories of players being rejected from tournaments and forced to forfeit because of their headcoverings have been reported for the last few years.A development that could potentially include thousands of players is g … [Read more...]

Darkest Before Dawn: Ramadan in a Time of Disillusionment

Salwa Bugaighis. [Source].

On June 25th, Salwa Bugaighis was shot dead at her home in Benghazi. A human rights activist and lawyer, Bugaighis was a charismatic figure who played a leadership role in the uprising and in the women's movement, supporting a campaign which sought to establish minimum quotas for female lawmakers in parliament as well as being vice-president of a preparatory committee for national dialogue that travelled around the country holding town hall meetings – one of the few post-2011 initiatives in L … [Read more...]

On Wasila Umaru and Child Marriage

The plight of Nigerian girls recently caught the attention of the world after the kidnapping of several hundred schoolgirls in Chibok over a month ago. Another story did not garner as much attention from either local or international media: that of Wasila Umaru. Apparently forced to marry a man in his thirties, Umaru Sani, and endure the reality of being a child bride, 14-year-old Wasila Umaru took matters in her own hands 17 days after the wedding ceremony. In April, Wasila was detained by the … [Read more...]

Ayaan Hirsi Ali and the “Villains” of Islam

[Source].

A few weeks ago, Brandeis University announced that Ayaan Hirsi Ali would be the recipient of an honorary degree. Controversy followed the announcement, encompassing those who believed that Ali follows the steps of Louis Brandeis (the man who the University was named after), those who think she is not as conservative as she could be (depending on the context), and those who characterize Ali as an Islamophobe.In the wake of this controversy, the University decided to withdraw the honorary … [Read more...]


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