Topics: Muslim, Islam, Woman Pages: 4 (1737 words) Published: October 14, 2011
"And tell the believing women to lower their eyes, and guard their modesty, and that they display not their ornaments except what appears of them. And that they draw their veils over their bosoms and display not their ornaments except to their husbands, their brothers ... And repent to Allah, all of you O believers, that you may succeed." [Al-Qur’ân 24:31] "That will be better, so that they may be recognised and not annoyed. Allah is Forgiving, Compassionate." [Al-Qur’ân 33:59] American Muslim women today are rediscovering Islam as revealed by Allah, to the Prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him, more than 1,400 years ago but without any of the contradictions of ancestral culture. Consequently they are essentially engaging in a life-long exercise of rediscovering their own selves; what it means to be a human, a Muslim, and more so, a Muslim woman. Wearing the divinely mandated hijâb, the veil or head covering, as a part of their everyday dresses is among the first steps toward this rediscovery. In a society which shamelessly and publicly exposes a woman's body and intimate requirements where nudity somehow symbolises the expression of a woman's freedom and where the most lustful desires of men are fulfilled unchecked, it is of little wonder such an introspection leads many Muslim women to decide to wear the hijâb. However, generalisations about Islam and Muslims are replete in today's media and, by extension, in the minds of many Americans who shape their image of the world through the media. Veiled Muslim women are typically unfairly stigmatised. They are regarded on the one hand as suppressed and oppressed, and on the other, as fanatics and fundamentalists. Both depictions are grossly wrong and imprecise. Such portrayals not only misrepresent these women's strong feelings towards the hijâb, but also fail to acknowledge their courage and the resulting identity the hijâb lends to them. Amongst such misconceptions is also the belief that any Muslim woman who wears...
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