This autumn a woman got beaten and abused, heavily pregnant, here in Sweden. The man who did it tried to rip off her hijab and pounded her head against a car. She got attacked because of the fact that she was a muslim. I can’t belive how people can get abused just because of their belief and clothes.
Some Swedish political feminists announced that they were going to fight for solidarity with these women by wearing hijab. I understand their motiv and everything. But there is so much more to the Hijab than just solidarity.
Only for a minority amongst the women who wear hijab is it a free choice. The majority of the world’s veiled women wear the hijab, and covering clothes, because they are victims of a patriarchal structured society, governed by religious laws. There are a number of provisions regarding the hijab, all with the goal in different ways to hide the woman and reduce her. And it’s not just about the headscarf. Other clothing should be loose and not reveal body shape. A woman’s dress should not imitate the opposite sex’s clothing, which probably means that women should preferably wear something man does not carry, for example an ankle-length skirt. The Muslim women’s dress should not resemble the “non-believers” clothing. The clothing should not be distinctive so that it attracts the opposite sex.
Hijab is also about how to behave. On the page “Islam answers” it says that the hijab also includes “the moral conduct, behavior, attitude and intention of the individual.” I interpret it as: women should basically look down at the ground and stay in place. It’s a way to control the women.
So their quest to “normalize” the hijab is like a scorn towards all the women who long to be able to throw it off. But of course, women who choose to wear the hijab should definately be able to do so without being subjects to threats and violence. But that does not justify the hijab-campaign. Solidarity must be shown with all vulnerable people.
I feel like I have no special right to express my opinion about this, not that I really have one either. I’m just a bit confused, that’s all.
Read these articles about the hijab-campaign: