Friday Links

Tajik state television has aired a documentary that alleges that prostitutes in the country have been wearing Islamic veils to earn more money. Once a month, Muslim women gather in a bright open space inside a brick building near downtown Los Angeles. They come for jumu'ah or Friday prayer. This "all women's mosque" has been described as an unconventional. Pakistani kids will finally meet homegrown heroes, when the first Pakistani animated feature is out this … [Read more...]

The New Pornographers: Operation Iraqi Freedom?

Few people would agree that pornography has hardly been an indicator of freedom or political stability. Some more would also agree that it is not a universal symbol of advancement or female empowerment. Nonetheless, this week Tarek El-Tablawy, an Associated Press writer, affirmed that pornography availability mirrors Iraq’s improvements in security and politics.More surprising, however, is the fact that many well-known websites published his article with little or no analysis. Websites such as … [Read more...]

Nahid Persson’s “Prostitution Behind the Veil”

This post was written by Farah Banihali and originally published at Nuseiba. For another perspective on Persson's documentary, check out Alicia's article from a few weeks ago.Iran has always been a country I’d love to sit down and read up on. When I first started university, I wrote a (terrible) essay on the causes of the Iranian Revolution and I got too caught up in names, dates and places and I never really learned anything. So my knowledge of the area is a little limited, but I try to r … [Read more...]

My Daughters’ Keeper: Nahid Persson’s “Prostitution Behind The Veil”

For a relatively high-brow TV channel, BBC4 is known for providing top quality programs and dramas. So when the BBC commemorated the 30th anniversary of Islamic Revolution in Iran, I became glued to the channel's string of intriguing documentaries on all things Iranian, post-1979. There were plenty on Iran-US nuclear politics and the fall of the Shah, all testosterone-fueled stuff. Sticking out from the rest for bearing themes that were uniquely female was the unfortunately-titled Prostitution … [Read more...]

Pimp My Daughter: Iraqi Women and Prostitution

I saw the movie Taken with my friend and her husband the other day and walked out of the theater feeling scared. It’s not a horror movie; the plot focuses on the sex trafficking of young women. The buyers are rich Arab men, of course.I wanted to be angry with the filmmakers for portraying Arab men as the root of all evil, but then I thought of Iraq and how prostitution sky-rocketed after the 2003 invasion.While I blame men for female prostitution, because it's their demand for the product … [Read more...]