Between worlds: the jilbab and being transgender in Indonesia

It is a scene that wouldn’t be unfamiliar in France or Belgium: a woman’s hijab is snatched away by strangers on the street from her head despite her protest. She is told she shouldn’t wear it, or rather, she has no right to because her wearing it mocks other women and femininity itself. But it… Continue reading Between worlds: the jilbab and being transgender in Indonesia

Marketing Muslim lifestyles and redefining modesty

This post was first published on Muslimah Media Watch If a hijab in Pucci-designed print could speak, what would it say? I attended a seminar presented by Professor Reina Lewis on Muslim women’s lifestyle magazines last night and was faced with this bizarre question. It all started with the actual seminar itself, which showcased the… Continue reading Marketing Muslim lifestyles and redefining modesty


When I was in school, congregations in the surau (small prayer halls or mini mosque) would be segregated by gender: women on one side, men on the other. We would enter the same door, pray next to each other but separated by a wispy thin, almost see-through curtain. I understood that women simply felt comfortable… Continue reading Purdah

Burqas and the British Police Farce

First published at Muslimah Media Watch Oh, this is just hilarious. Three female police officers were ordered to dress up as Muslim women for the day just to see what it felt like. They wore traditional burkhas as part of a scheme designed to help police interact better with the Islamic community. It’s like going… Continue reading Burqas and the British Police Farce

Pink is for tween Muslimahs

Update: An extended version of this post can be found at Muslimah Media Watch It had to happen sooner or later. With Barbie and now Hannah Montana merchandise dominating the tween to early teenage market in Malaysia, products for young Muslim women in hijab are starting to appear, particularly on the bookshelves. And they look… Continue reading Pink is for tween Muslimahs

No, thank you, Naomi Wolf

This is a response to’s article, ‘Thank you, Naomi Wolf‘. When I started reading about Feminism (in order to get acquainted with the ‘canon’ before I can establish myself as a feminist), I bought Naomi Wolf’s ‘Promiscuities‘. As I was into sex-positivism at the time, the title even sounded like the right kind book… Continue reading No, thank you, Naomi Wolf