This week’s decision by the European court of justice to allow the hijab to be banned in the workplace is yet another sign of the continent’s obsession with how Muslim women dress.
The ruling states that the hijab can be banned only as part of a policy barring all religious and political symbols – and so framed in a way that doesn’t directly target Muslim women. Indeed, the Conference of European Rabbis was outraged, saying that the ruling sent a clear message that Europe’s faith communities were no longer welcome – and a number of religious communities, including Sikhs, will be affected.
However, there’s no doubt that Muslims are the main group in the line of fire. That’s why far-right groups across the continent were so delighted with it. “Of course companies have to be allowed to ban the wearing of headscarves,” said Georg Pazderski, of Germany’s hardline Alternative für Deutschland. “Even the ECJ votes Marine [le Pen],” tweeted the French MP Gilbert Collard, a Front National supporter.
.... I have friends who have taken to wearing the hijab in recent years because they feel their Muslim identity has been threatened, and they have decided to take a stand for their faith.
The far-right, and now the European courts, may have succeeded in turning the hijab into something perhaps even more powerful than a symbol of religion, and turning it into a symbol of resistance too. [571 comments]
[TOP RATED COMMENT 1034 votes] "the continent’s obsession with how Muslim women dress"
Surely it's the obsession of misogynist religious fanatics who want to deny women a public identity.
[2ND 842] The Koran says women should dress modestly, it says very little about what that entails. The headscarf is cultural, it is not religious.
[3RD 727] "The hijab ruling is a ban on Muslim women"
Great British Public "Oh, no it isn't"
Graunitariat and Muslim Council of Great Britain "Oh yes it is"
[4TH 632] This lady says the European court of justice is repressing women but says nothing about the repressive nature of Islam that requires women to wear these things.
[5TH 626] "the hijab doesn’t fit neatly under the bracket of being a “religious symbol”"
"I have friends who have taken to wearing the hijab in recent years because they feel their Muslim identity has been threatened"
Sounds a bit contradictory.
[6TH 619] "However, the hijab doesn’t fit neatly under the bracket of being a “religious symbol”".
Absolutely right. It's also a misogynist and patriarchal symbol, as well as a nod to a theocratic political ideology.
[7TH 554] its a ban, on a religious oppressive symbol, all oppressive symbols should be banned.
[8TH 528] "For its wearers the hijab is a core part of their way of life, linked to the way they choose to practise their faith. It is not up for debate."
The hijab is completely optional: women wear it because they choose to. That means it is well and truly up for debate.
[9TH 490] "I have friends who have taken to wearing the hijab in recent years because they feel their Muslim identity has been threatened, and they have decided to take a stand for their faith."
And I have friends in Turkey who have had to flee their country because the public and government pressure to cover their heads to even get a job in the Government, or walk comfortably down the street without being harassed, was overwhelming. [Guardian Cif] Read more