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Muslim Barbie

My sister and I headed to the toy store for some games for her clients. I saw this barbie and cracked up. I hope the shopkeeper didn’t take offense, but I just had to snap a shot. I don’t know why I’m so amused by this; after all, 6 year old girls forced to wear the hijab get to play with dolls too.

muslim barbie

There is always controversy regarding Islamic law; is drinking forbidden (or better known as haram), does the woman have to cover all her face, or just her hair? In religion class in school I was always taught that it is mentioned in the Koran that women must wear the hijab and cover her arms up to her wrists and legs down to her ankles. The other day I met with some producers at Grey Scale Studio in Amman and one of them is working on an article exploring the hijab. His argument is that the hijab is not required, as it is not officially mentioned in the Koran. According to him, the Koran only states that women must cover up to their elbows and up to their knees, but because of ‘tafseer’ (interpretation/translation) the covering of the head has been included. From what I know, covering the head is not just an Islamic thing, but dates pre-Islam as both women and men would wrap their heads to protect them from the sand and heat of the desert. Both Christian and Jewish women cover their heads as well.

Contrary to what many people think, Islam does not disrespect women. What Islam does do, is place a big emphasis on gender differences. To me, the hijab incriminates men. It says, men are perverts and cannot look at women without dirty thoughts, therefor women must protect themselves by covering up. Another rule in Islam is that when women and men who are not immediate relatives speak to each other, they must lower their gaze. This is also incriminating to both men and women, as if we are unable to hold a decent conversation without dirty thoughts.

I guess if one were to accept Islam, they must realize that these rules were made at a different time and place. What bothers me is that as a muslim, how much do I accept as a solid rule and how much do I let pass as something that is constantly changing with society. If Islam is accepting of societal changes and evolves with them, what will be left of Islam in 100 years? Organized religion is a funny thing…


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