Pick Up Artists: Veiling Misogyny with Islam


*Trigger Warning: Rape, Sexualized Violence, Misogyny* Toronto boasts a wonderfully diverse population. It is probably one of the most diverse cities in the world. And it is also home to the largest Muslim community in the country. There are different Islamic centres, and incredible organizations like Outburst! that advocate for the rights of Muslim women. Toronto also hosts wonderful food festivals, and huge conferences featuring world class scholars and teachers of Islamic knowledge and … [Read more...]

A Creeping Sharia Freakout: How France’s latest “Muslim Problem” Really Wasn’t One


As is usually the case in France, any time anything happens where Muslims could even remotely be involved, it becomes a media circus - any time is a good time to talk about how “Muslims want it their way” or how “Muslims don’t want to integrate.”Last week, a 21 year old woman in a public park in the city of Reims was apparently assaulted by Muslim women for wearing a bikini in public. Several news outlets picked up on the story, including my personal favorite, the Daily Mail (whether that is … [Read more...]

Is Islamophobia Real?


A few weeks ago, I was meeting a friend of a friend for the first time. Now usually, my name gets transformed into Tamsin, or Tasmeem, or Tasmeen (the last two have quite unfortunate meanings in Arabic). In this case, the person I was introducing myself to said “Oh, like that creepy ISI woman.” I wasn’t sure what this referred to. Cue explanation that there was a character named Tasneem on season four of the TV show Homeland, a creepy ISI woman who was in league with the Taliban.Although Home … [Read more...]

A Potential Burqa Ban at the Federal Level in Switzerland

The optimism in my last post, at least for Switzerland, has been tempered with news coming out of Switzerland last week.In Switzerland (where niqab is already banned in Ticino since 2013), the German-speaking newspaper SonntagsBlick recently cited a survey saying that 62% of the Swiss population would be in favor of a burqa ban.  Granted, the Tribune de Geneve mentioned that the methodology of the SonntagsBlick survery was not made clear. But as usual, Muslim women and their clothing are the … [Read more...]

“Not Even Birthday Cake?” Or, Coping With (Non-Muslims’) Reactions to Ramadan

gorgeous calligraphy, created by cruel uncultured barbarians no doubt.

This guest post by Nahida was originally published at the fatal feminist.When I was small, my schoolyard friends would gasp in shock at the idea of going without food or water for as long as a drop of sunlight hit the pavement. (“All day?” they’d marvel with the same tone that they’d ask, “You run THAT fast?”) Pleased with the astonished reaction, I would boast that not only could I abstain an entire day without complaints, but I had already done it not once but twice. (“Did you die?” ask … [Read more...]

Qatar’s Modest Proposal: Dignity or Diversion?


Originally published at Aquila Style.Qatar has revived a modesty campaign dating from 2012, when it was known as “One of us” and originally started by a group of Qatari women.[i] Due to be relaunched on 20 June 2014 – just in time for Ramadan – as “Reflect your respect”, the campaign is targeting public spaces with flyers and a social media poster showing various dress choices.[ii] Four stick bodies represent clothing choices that are deemed unacceptably immodest for revealing shoulders, arms … [Read more...]

“Hijabi Experiments”: Are They Enough to Change America’s Perception on Hijab?

Image via Youtube.

Every time we think this discussion about hijab and burqas has ended, the internet surprises us with new horizons on the issue. I was checking my Facebook the other day, and a video caught my attention because of its title. It was called "Hijabi Experiments." I am not a big fan of watching such videos, but this particular one, originally posted in December 2013, had about three million views, so I thought there must be something different with it.I have to say: I was disappointed. The … [Read more...]