Sunday, January 29, 2017

Hijab Glorification : Thoughts on the Shepard Fairey Poster

Artwork by Shepard Fairey

As a woman who grew up under Sharia in Saudi Arabia, I cannot help but resist the glorification of the tools of my oppression.

As much as I loathe Trump, and the chaos he's creating, as much as I stand in solidarity with Muslims at this much as I am personally affected by discrimination against Muslims myself...I cannot sit back and watch conservative Islam be championed in this complex and toxic political climate. 

I ask my fellow critics of religion to be particularly cautious at this time not to feed into far right narratives of hate.... similarly, I ask my fellow left leaning liberals not to fall into romanticizing conservative Islam. It's like walking a tightrope, I understand - but the more we avoid falling into traps on either side...the better equipped we will be to combat this. 

Here is a brief message on the subject: 

Here is the article mentioned in the podcast.

And below are my pieces in Response to the Shepard Fairey one. Let me know your thoughts!


Early Sketches


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  1. Great commentary!!!! Keep up the good work!!!


  3. Thank you so much for this thoughtful and intelligent commentary. We need so much more.

  4. Thank you for your insights. I think more people need to listen to you.

  5. A great analogy and quote, "...its like putting on chasity belts to show feminist empowerment and solidarity."

  6. so.. I often feel that.. yes, the community has a purity fetish and overvalued this piece of clothing..
    on other hand.. I feel it depends on where one lives.
    I'm liberal in the sense that I think people should decide what they wear, if they want to be skimpy, feel free, I dont judge because I dont see human bodies or nakedness as sinful (and dislike that notion)
    There are some hard lines for me- no symbol that glorify naziism (would be banned here anyways) and also no symbols that glorify other hate movement, so daehs is ofc included.
    I also really massively dislikes niqabs and such, but feel that bans .. Idk, I fear they dont help the people being forced to wear it as i fear them just being imprisoned, but I also dislike what it symbolizes and this isolation..(also I cant look into peoples eyes when talking so that makes communication harder because I have nothing else to fixate on)
    In societies where there is a strong pressure to wear it I am against it. I wish for it to be seen as a piece of clothing that has some religious significance but not exclusively. I have a deep dislike against people who say its mandatory or imply it says anything about the religiousness of the person wearing it.
    human nature maybe makes it into a performance object in the sense of "look how religious I am" *blergh*
    But in societies where there is a stronger pressure against it I can understand why some want to wear it as a way of belonging and Identity and I know two young women who are the only ones from their family to wear it against the recommendations of their family (fear of attacks, harassment, isolation) but they do it nonetheless
    (there is also the problem of those people becoming either a default or some "model muslim", wanting to prove that some prejudices are wrong(which well wont work because people love to make "you are the exception"speeches and also..well the assumptions are right for some other people :/ )
    I also know someone who is liberal and open about it(which gets her sadly aggressions from all sides) and wear it to say that you shouldn't have to be orthodox, accept the sexism and homophobia to wear hijab but that it can be a sign to show you are muslim and nothing else and that islam doesn't have too be backwards, sexist, homophobic, that it can change, that there can be an interpretation that is non violent and not oppressive..(you can believe how the "my interpretation is the truth, there is no oth"-assholes love to hear that stuff..*sigh*(
    (she argues for equal rights for all queer people, against racism, antisemitism, transphobia and misogyny. I wish there were more like her )