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veil-burning in somalia May 10, 2007

Posted by sindhub in Ayesha Dharkar, bodies, deception, Ethics, fashion police, Female Power, female soldiers, gender, ideology, in the news, International, islam, modesty, morality, nationalism, news stories, politics, Power, somalia, the state, The Terrorist, wartime politics, women and war, women in the military.
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There have been news stories in the past two days about government soliders in Somalia, which is currently in a state of civil war with explosions taking place recently in capital Mogadishu, taking women’s veils (ones where only the eyes are uncovered) and burning them.  When I first heard about it, I thought it seemed like what happened in pre-1979 revolution Iran, when women weren’t allowed to dress in religious garb in an avowedly secular state ruled by a monarch, but it turns out that the recent veil-burning wasn’t government-sanctioned.  The soliders did it because they wanted to make sure that the women weren’t part of the ‘rebel’ Islamist movement, and hiding bombs or weapons under their veils.

I thought this situation was interesting in its similarity to The Terrorist.  Malli is valued within her organization because she’s a woman, which means that she is underestimated and seen in a de-politicized way, which will enable her to get past security checkpoints–while carrying the ammunition she needs in the basket on her head, and not firewood or whatever the soliders may assume it is, showing that it is precisely her femaleness that allows her to get by–and get close enough to the politician to assassinate him.  It seems that the Somali soliders were concerned that they were letting Muslim women who might pose a threat get by because of their female religious need/desire to cover themselves modestly, and decided to take action, for their own safety presumably.

Something else that comes to mind is how this fits women into nationalism.  (more…)

Working Girl Pet Peeves March 7, 2007

Posted by rachaelg in betrayal, careerwomen, deception, Female Power, Power, Working Girl.

1. The response to Mick’s infidelity.  I assumed that when Tess stormed off their relationship was over.  When she sees him again at the party, I applauded her for managing to be so civil, then groaned when they started dancing and it seemed like she was having trouble moving on.  I felt sorry for her.  Then, when he had the nerve to ask her to MARRY HIM after what he did and all she did was say MAYBE?!  I was appalled.  And then his reaction… how did he think he had the right to be so furious?  And HE was the one who walked away.  At least if it had been her, it might have been a symbol of SOME kind of agency, but no, she gets dumped after he cheats on her.  That pissed me off.  Where is the female empowerment?  I wanted Tess to (more…)