Friday Links

England's first women-only mosque will open in Bradford, a 19th-century industrial boomtown and one of the most heavily Muslim-populated cities in the U.K., the Muslim Women’s Council announced.House of Fraser is now selling sports hijabs that are designed for women to wear while doing exercise, including swimming. According to the Daily Mail, It follows a move by John Lewis last year to sell hijab school uniforms. Congo-Brazzaville, a Central African nation, has banned women f … [Read more...]

Review of Desert Dancer (2015)

Source

Six years ago I attended a contemporary dance workshop, and while I’ve been dancing for most of my life, what struck me most was one improvisation that involved dancing as if you were the furniture in your room. When we had come up with a sequence of movements representing various wardrobes, nightstands, mirrors, beds and tables, we had to then dance it while interpreting the concept of fear.I was thinking about this workshop as I watched Desert Dancer (2015) by Richard Raymond. The film is p … [Read more...]

Hijab Removal, Iranian Women, and Freedom of Dress

Image via the My Stealthy Freedom Facebook page.

This post was originally published at Aquila Style.The liberal feminist organisation Femen and its members’ naked breasts have had their media run. Now a more modest sort of uncovering is happening, this time in Iranian social media. Last month, London-based Iranian journalist Masih Alinejad started a movement on Facebook and Twitter, translated as “My Stealth Freedom”, to highlight the “legal and social restrictions” faced by women in Iran.Secular and Muslim women all over Iran are p … [Read more...]

Countering the “Musulmacho:” Drawing the Line between Humour and Inappropriate Commentary

pearl

A few months ago I was invited to like a Facebook page called Memes Feministas Islámicos. The page targets mostly Spanish speakers, and it claims to be countering Muslim patriarchies online. Their “About us” page reads: “Nos sumamos a la tarea de contrarrestar el machismo en el cyber espacio y al igual que nuestras compañeras feministas del mundo, nos reímos mientras desmantelamos Patriarcado en el Islam.”“We aim to counter macho-like behaviours online, and just like our feminist comrades ar … [Read more...]

Propelling Iran’s Bad Rep

"Rapture" by Shirin Neshat. [Source].

When I was growing up in a small city on Canada’s East Coast, many of my classmates had no idea where Pakistan was located. It was the mid-eighties and I was unable to convince them I was NOT Indian just because both my parents were born in India. I decided to do an extensive geography project on my home country. I used pictures from my own travels and maps my father collected, and added a lot of details. I carefully drew flags, brought in mithai (Pakistani sweetmeats) and Nazia Hussain tapes, a … [Read more...]

Film Review: Unveiled Views

Moshagan Saadat. Image via Women Make Movies.

“When someone wants to be an artist, because they cannot let what’s going on around them stay the same, achieving fame in the world of art becomes unimportant.” –Alma Suljevic I am a lover of all art forms, including cinema; the Women Make Movies initiative, and the kind of varied and thought-provoking cinema they help produce, has always captured my interest.Alba Sotorra’s 2009 film Unveiled Views was a movie I could sit and proudly watch on my own, or even watch with family. … [Read more...]

Facing Mirrors: Iranian Filmmaker Explores Trans* Identity in Iran

Facing Mirrors

Transgender identities and trans* embodiment are topics that are generally ignored within many communities, and the Muslim community is no exception, and transgendered people are oftentimes pushed to the margins.Art, film, music and other forms of artistic expression, unlike more fixed modes of understanding, can often open up a conversation that communities and individuals may be hesitant to explicitly explore. As I was cruising tumblr recently, searching for thought provoking and … [Read more...]


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