On Sexual Violence and Media Portrayal in Pakistan

Years ago, loose gravel on a trail up Margalla Hills landed me in the emergency room with a sprained ankle.  All I remember at the time was the excruciating pain radiating from my ankle and worrying if it was broken and whether I'd be able catch a plane on time to return to university.  My mother and I were waiting for the doctor to finally see us when we heard a commotion in the main foyer.  A muffled siren could be heard just outside and medical personnel whizzed by us, yelling orders, but ev … [Read more...]

What Should We Make of the Malala Issue?

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Editor’s note: Malala Yousafzai has been extensively covered in media lately, and several MMW writers wanted to weigh in on the way she is being portrayed. This is the final post about her; see also Amina's and Nicole's posts from earlier this week.Malala Yousafzai has figured in MMW’s posts since the Taliban attempted to kill her due to her activism, which was discussed by Merium last year.  In another post, guest contributor Ossob described the difficulties that Malala’s figure posed not on … [Read more...]

Is Pakistan Really Neverland?: Malala, the Perpetual Child Activist

Malala Yousafzai being interviewed by Jon Stewart.  Via News Asylum.

Editor’s note: Malala Yousafzai has been extensively covered in media lately, and several MMW writers wanted to weigh in on the way she is being portrayed. Yesterday, Amina wrote about portrayals of Malala as an exception, and today Nicole Hunter Mostafa looks at the focus on Malala being a child.  Stay tuned for a final Malala post by Eren later this week.Are you tired of hearing about Malala Yousafzai yet? If you type “Malala is” into Google (at least, here in Saudi Arabia), the first three … [Read more...]

“Outlawed in Pakistan”: A Powerful Look at Violence Against Women

Scene from Outlawed in Pakistan. [Source].

FRONTLINE is one of my favorite shows to watch on television. Their documentaries are thoughtful and available to watch indefinitely online in the United States. In addition to airing documentaries, they have a fantastic online presence and provide additional commentary, interviews, and chats for each of their shows to further engage with viewers. I watched The Interrupters in 2012 for Muslimah Media Watch, when it aired under FRONTLINE in the United States. You can still watch that film … [Read more...]

Burka Avenger: Lady in Black

Image from the Burka Avenger website.

When I wear hijab, I find that the average Pakistani takes me a lot more seriously.  Vendors at farmer's markets don't over charge me for being a “valaithi” (foreigner); the guy at the pharmacy limits eye contact and listens politely while I discuss the pros and cons of generic versus brand medications.  I get fewer curious stares and far less incidences of “accidental” brush-ups when maneuvering crowded streets.  Even match-making mamas are impressed by my modesty (not my age, but that's another … [Read more...]

Eid in Four Countries

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As one final addition to our Ramadan 2013 posts, we wanted to share a series of reflections on how Eid was spent among some of our writers. Writing, respectively, from South Africa, Pakistan, Canada, and Kuwait, MMW bloggers Safiyyah, Merium, Shireen, and wood turtle bring us their experiences of food, gender issues, politics, and celebration.Safiyyah (South Africa)In South Africa this year, 'Eid day coincided with our national holiday, "Women's Day" on 9 August. Women's Day in South … [Read more...]

Fat, Brown, Muslim LBT Women Say No

This post was written by guest contributor Fakhra Hassan (@DragittotheTop).“Fatness and obesity in Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans (LBT) women are a result of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) - self-inflicted abuse on the body in order to shun any unwanted sexual attention or emotional interest from people,” said Dr Pinar Ilkkaracan of Turkey, at the 5th CSBR Sexuality Institute at Alexandria, Egypt, which I attended in September of last year.I am no exception to the LBT women Pinar was … [Read more...]


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