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feminism_lives

The burqa/niqab ban came into force this week in France

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Apr. 15th, 2011 | 12:57 pm
posted by: secretrebel in feminism_lives

Post from the F word about it here.

I still can't believe this has actually happened. Okay, I know that some view wearing the veil as oppressive. But you don't fight oppression with oppression, right?

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Comments {5}

Shameless

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from: liminalia
date: Apr. 15th, 2011 12:58 pm (UTC)
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Demanding that women cover and demanding that they uncover are equally oppressive. This isn't about feminism or helping Muslim women, this is about racism and xenophobia.

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Jamie Hankins

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from: wight1984
date: Apr. 15th, 2011 01:16 pm (UTC)
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I think the reality is that whilst this move may be dressed up as 'protecting women' it doesn't have much to do with that. I don't think that people like Nicolas Sarkozy have any interest in feminism.

The obvious rule that I strongly suspect everyone here will agree with is that women deserve the right to decide what to wear based on their own religious/cultural/moral/political values and beliefs, regardless of anyone else's approval.

Personally, I have no problem with the burqa if a woman is freely choosing to wear it, no more than I have a problem with women who wear lots of sexually provocative clothing or constantly wear make-up if that's what they choose. When I do have an objection to make, it's never about the item of clothing itself but the extent to which women can be said to be forced or pressured into wearing it.

Dr Nazreen Nawaz has some interesting thoughts on this: youtube

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Jamie Hankins

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from: wight1984
date: Apr. 15th, 2011 01:20 pm (UTC)
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Just took a look at the article:

"But I wouldn’t suggest banning high heels, because as long as women want to wear them - for whatever reason - all I would be doing is controlling their lives based on my personal beliefs, not theirs. That’s not liberation, and it’s not feminism."

Yes, this. Even where I do feel a woman is submitting herself to patriarchy, it is her choice to make. It's not for me, the state or anyone else to wade into their life and start making their decisions for them because they can't be trusted to be feminist enough.

"This isn’t a perfect analogy. I’d hazard a guess that almost all women who wear high heels would still go out in public without them if my ban came into force. For some French Muslim women, however, this ban may effectively confine them to the private sphere, due to the strength of the ideology behind the wearing of the niqab/burqa."

All the more reason why this ban is a bad idea.

It forces Muslim women who wear the veil to choose between their beliefs/values and participating fully in society. That's not a good choice to force them into.

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1ngi

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from: 1ngi
date: Apr. 15th, 2011 01:29 pm (UTC)
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Absobloodylutly right. You don't take away choice.

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Sushidog

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from: sushidog
date: Apr. 15th, 2011 02:40 pm (UTC)
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I don't think they're trying to fight oppression; if they were, banning the would be a ridiculous move, as in effect that's like saying "Oppression is bad! You there, stop being oppressed, or we'll fine you!" rather than addressing the people doing the oppressing. It's about preventing people (and specifically women) from looking too obviously foreign in a built-up area and, perhaps more to the point, about making an implicit statement of hostility to Islam.

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