Cloth throughout history worn for a political, personal or functional reason. Muslim cloth in general and Hijab in particular, have triggered so much debate and controversial in this country. America seemed obsessed with what Muslim women wear or don’t wear as if the only problem we are facing in this country. where, Political hijab is celebrated everyday in the White House and national news. The symbolism of Muslim hijab ranges from an oppression of Muslim women to a strong identity and a strong feminist stand. Lately we have two Muslim women who used hijab to break ground with totally different symbolism. “Halima Aden and Rep. Ilhan Omar. “Halima Aden both, brook ground and Made History as the First Model to Wear a Hijab and Burkini in Sports Illustrated Swimsuit. “ screamed the headline of the Sports Illustrated Magazine, SI, on the front page , the 21 year old Somali Muslim playfully lying on the beach wearing her sexy burkini swimsuit. I’m not sure about the business of Breaking history and being first. lots of Muslims women wear burkini on the beach, swim with their everyday cloth which a wholesome sexy too for lots of onlookers.
International Women’s Day (IWD).. is a day that the world celebrate the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women, “ March 8th, was designated by UN to not just celebrate women rights, but to call for actions to improve women rights and gender parity. However, Arab and Muslim women who have a long history of struggle for their economic, legal and social rights, their stories mostly ignored.
New Olympic sport: judging athletes in hijabs
The Egyptian women’s beach volleyball team changed the conversation about women’s dress and feminism.
By AHMED THARWAT
AUGUST 18, 2016 — 6:40PM
Since Athens 1896, there have been many changes to the sports on the summer Olympic program. at Rio 2016 golf and rugby-7s join the program to reach 28. Aquatics, canoe/kayak, cycling, gymnastics, equestrian, volleyball and wrestling have multiple disciplines, but the new sport that was recently added and everyone was talking about is judging athletes in hijab.
The contrasting images last week of the fully clothed Egyptian women’s beach volleyball team playing the skimpily clad German team swept across media coverage and the internet during the 2016 Rio Olympics. Sports uniforms, which are big business mainly dominated by corporate sponsorship, were suddenly transformed into a cultural hot button on the beach of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
Watching women with oily bodies in bikinis playing beach volleyball has become a global spectacle, attracting millions of viewers. Sexism has always been a part of women sports. But only recently, in 2012 to be exact, the FIVB (International Volleyball Federation) announced that it would no longer enforce its bikini requirement on women’s beach volleyball players.
That decision was driven not by cultural or feminist pressure, but by the global appeal of volleyball in non-Western countries and by fear of losing the market and players in places where people have different ideas about how women should dress. FIVB spokesman Richard Baker said, “We don’t think we will see much change [in attire] on the world tour.”
However, the Egyptian team not only delivered change at the Rio Olympics, but changed the conversation about women’s dress and feminism. Muslim women, body and soul, were once again in the international forefront. The West has been fixated on Muslim women’s dress for a long time. France has banned hijab wearing in public schools and government facilities, and the “burqini” — the long swimwear that some Muslim women wear — has been banned at some beaches.
The media’s extensive coverage of Donald Trump’s bizarre insulting of the parents of a Muslim American soldier who was killed in Iraq is overblown. Most of them focused on Trump’s dismissive attitude toward Mr. Khan’s wife who stood quietly while her husband delivered his passionate speech at the Democratic National Convention. He was the choice of the must have Muslim guy, since the Republican convention had one before them.
Selling Lingerie on the Egyptian Street
Cairo’s Tahrir Square is the global symbol of the January 25th Revolution, where millions of Egyptians, including women, went to demand the toppling of the regime. Lately, Tahrir Square has witnessed the courting of the Egyptian population by General Al Sisi and his propaganda machine as well as a “Million Woman March” demanding the toppling of the hijab.
The history of progressive women and their struggle for independence and social freedom is an old one, starting with the Egyptian feminist and activist, Huda El Sha’arwi, founder of the Egyptian Feminist Union in 1923. Two events stand out in the history of women’s struggle in Egypt. In the Egyptian Revolution of 1919, women demonstrated side by side with men and used their hijab as a symbol of resistance to the British occupation, and again in the 1940’s and early 50’s, when small groups of radical women leftists embraced the topics of inequality and nationalism with a strong anti-imperialist bent. Here is pamphlet published by the group that announced, “. . . struggle to realize democratic freedom for women in Egypt–that is the freedom which cannot arrive under the shadow of the imperialist and imperialism nor under the shadow of enslavement and exploitation.”
Egyptian women, who are again trying to gain the freedom to remove their hijab, need to “burn their bras” first, as their western counterparts did in the sexual revolution of the 60’s. Back in Tahrir Square, Egyptian women may not be exactly burning their bras anytime soon, but you can see them buying bras, lingerie and undergarments on the street. Nowadays, it is not uncommon to see bras and lingerie displayed on every street corner and in the windows of shops, even on sidewalks in the slums of Cairo.