College Essay: The veil: ‘A means of empowerment’

Bilan Mohamed

Being Muslim isn’t something I can hide. I wear it in my dress and I show it in my actions.

My heartbeat increased and my palms started to sweat as I slowly walked by my neighbors’ house, hoping they didn’t notice me. Even though I wasn’t looking at them, I could feel them staring.

I expected myself to be brave and stand up straight, but I couldn’t. I tried to tiptoe my way past their front yard.

I thought I was free from his attacks, but then I heard my neighbor say, “Terrorist.” When I heard that, I bit my lip to try to contain myself from exploding on him.

These are the attacks I get for being a Muslim woman.

Being Muslim isn’t something I can hide. I wear it in my dress and I show it in my actions. Through these insults, I’ve realized that I can’t change people’s opinions of Muslims by fighting or arguing with them, but through education I can teach people about my faith and what it means to be a Muslim woman. These situations have strengthened my faith and devotion to Islam. I view my veil not as a weakness but as a means of empowerment.

As a child I never realized people didn’t wear hijabs. Since I was born in Somalia, I was surrounded by people who dressed like me and practiced my religion. I didn’t feel different.

Then the civil war hit, and I was forced out of my country. My family of seven found ourselves in a refugee camp in Kenya. Later, we had permission to fly to the U.S., not knowing I would leave a physical struggle only to enter an emotional one.

When I arrived in America, it was a culture shock for me. Everything was different, from the way people dressed to the way they ate. It was the small things that stuck out to me.

For example, in Somalia, my neighbors were more like family. If someone saw you wandering around, they probably knew your family and would take you home. In America my neighbors were distant. They didn’t visit, say hello or ask how I was doing. We were more like strangers. As a child that made me feel alone.

In order for me to not forget my culture, my parents enrolled me in a charter school that has a big Somali population. I was slowly exposed to other cultures, but I made sure not to forget mine. Growing up in America, I’ve seen many Somali kids change themselves to fit in, losing religion and culture. Some fully assimilate, leaving behind their family, while others accept some concepts of American culture but still keep their traditions.

Wearing the hijab is a reminder of my beliefs. I wear it through the heat of the summer, through the cold of winter and despite the curious stares. It takes willpower. Many would give up, but I’m not the average person. I wear my hijab because it’s part of who I am.

I am very dedicated and I don’t give up easily when things get tough. Negative comments don’t get to me anymore, because my experiences have made me more devoted to my faith.

I was 12 years old when my neighbor called me a terrorist. Back then I would always have a reply ready for him, but now I realize all he wanted was a reaction.

At age 17, I do things differently. I’ve realized people will try to put you down, but you can’t let that impact your actions or decisions.

My struggles in life have made me a stronger person. Wearing the veil has made me the strong Muslim woman that I am today. But to succeed, and to help my neighbor understand me, I need an education that teaches me how to share my stories with the world and help the Somali community voices be heard.

college essay about hijab

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Why I Wear A Hijab

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Having lived my whole life by the teachings of the Islamic faith, I understand the appreciations and values associated with the Hijab. However, also living in Canada, a pro-western society, I also see how some might see it as an oppression set upon Muslim women; objectively isolating them from the rest of society. I believe that the Hijab means much more than just a piece of cloth covering a woman’s hair. It represents their identity and their pride. It is considered to be the flag of their way of life, their religion. Unfortunately, people of other cultures see it as a horrific tradition of the past that degrades a woman’s rights and freedoms.

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Muslim women have been prohibited from wearing their headcoverings in a number of contexts. They have been harassed, fired from jobs, denied access to public places, and otherwise discriminated against because they wear hijab. Because of their visibility, Muslim women who wear hijab face particular exposure to discrimination and have increasingly been targets for harassment in the aftermath of September 11. While it is difficult to obtain accurate statistics about discriminatory incidents, reported instances of discrimination appear to be on the rise.

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Growing up as a child, regardless of how many times I was told that wearing a hijab is a central part of my identity, I was still unsure of my identity. Unsure about who I am, who I will be, where I will be, and what defines me. I was a Muslim girl surrounded by a sea full of people ready to judge me. Ready to break me down. I was fourteen years old when I had my first encounter with a woman who almost defined everything that I believed

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As a child, I didn’t think my life’s situations and experiences were too different from others being a Muslim in Canada. I only came to the realization of this as I grew older. Living as a Muslim we celebrated different holidays, wore different types of clothing, and valued things differently. I grew up in Cambridge, Ontario, and only moved to Mississauga in the ninth-grade grade where I realized how much differently I was treated. It wasn’t always ignorance; they were just unknowledgeable and unaware and I couldn’t blame them as I was apart of a religious minority. I looked at the understanding of my life’s events being apart of an Islamic subculture from a conflict theorist’s perspective where social life was looked at as “privileged groups

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The author, Naheed Mustafa, starts out with two points of view others have of her, a “Muslim terrorist” or an oppressed woman (Mustafa 1). However, with these two points of view, Mustafa is suggesting that people only view her in these two ways because in their eyes a Muslim woman cannot be more. Then she introduces the hijab, a scarf which covers her neck, head, and throat, but explains that young Muslim women like her are “reinterpreting” the purpose of the hijab: give women absolute control over their bodies. According to Mustafa, the hijab does not only give women absolute control but freedom. Yet, others do not understand this concept or why a young woman who was born in a land that is free and full of opportunities like North America

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I started wearing the hijab to school in grade four. I was lucky enough to grow up in a diverse community, where Muslims were the norm. There were times though, when I would notice tiny hints here and there. Sometimes, whenever my mother and I would go on the bus, people would stare. Being an innocent, young child, I would not notice this of course. As time went on, little things would happen; the stares, the slow shuffle, “the usual”. I never used to notice this, because I thought racism had ended years ago. But then I started taking the TTC to school, and I noticed. Suddenly the “stares” became more prominent; the slow shuffle seemed awkward; even the worried glances towards me

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college essay about hijab

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More about Essay On Hijab

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Why Women Wear the Hijab Personal Essay

What i wish people understood about my choice to wear the hijab.

college essay about hijab

Eight months ago, I woke up one day and decided to start wearing the hijab. I understood that the decision would inevitably affect almost every aspect of my life — but I didn't care. I told my family that I was "just practicing," but in the back of my mind, I knew I would not be taking it off. I was making natural-hair videos on my YouTube channel at the time of my decision, so my choice came as a shock to many of the people who watch me. But it is a choice that I have never once regretted. Wearing the hijab and committing to the lifestyle that goes along with it is something I've always wanted for myself but never imagined it coming so soon.

At 21, wearing the hijab was a huge step I took entirely for myself, but one I had to mindfully maneuver in front of the entire world.

It's different when you live in the Western world. People stare, stores don't cater to modest dressing, and I constantly have to explain that, no, I don't shower with the scarf on my head. It means being persistent and strong in my beliefs. I shouldn't have to go out of my way to make you feel comfortable that I'm not a terrorist. Islam literally means peace, but TV shows, movies, and even news coverage rarely show that, hence why these stereotypes are created. At 21, wearing the hijab was a huge step I took entirely for myself, but one I had to mindfully maneuver in front of the entire world.

I made this choice just after the presidential election, which hit me hard. Though it was a change I'd been thinking of making for some time, Donald Trump's victory was just the push I needed. It was a conscious choice to combat the hateful rhetoric of Trump and anti-Muslim sentiment. I would hear stories of young women taking off the hijab out of fear every day. We hear the hate-crime stories and, unfortunately, hijabi women are common victims. And while I'm proud to wear the hijab, I've noticed the way it changes how some people view me and treat me. Just a couple weeks ago, I was told to take off my hijab by LaGuardia airport security. It was hard not to wonder if the question was asked out of ignorance or if this woman was abusing her power because she finally felt she could.

For me, wearing the hijab has been the most liberating experience. It is a reminder every single moment that I am a Muslim and that my actions should reflect that. It's changed the way I speak and interact with people. I've learned more about myself in the past few months than I have in my entire life. It feels crazy to say, but it's really put things in perspective and helped me to realize what is actually important to me. I fall more in love with myself as I fall more in love with the hijab. It's the greatest feeling when women come to me for advice or tell me how I've inspired them to start wearing the hijab. Or even women who've been wearing the hijab for years telling me that they're excited all over again — it's the greatest reward.

By wearing the hijab, I reject your ability to objectify, sexualize, or body shame me.

That's why representation is needed now more than ever. There need to be more Muslim women in the public eye. Take model Halima Aden, for instance: her success has influenced young Muslims across the world while also showing the public an accurate, positive depiction of a Muslim woman. Not to explain how the hijab is not a form of oppression, but to show it. If people took the time to understand that the hijab is not just a headscarf but really learned about the values and philosophy behind it, there wouldn't be such a divide. By wearing the hijab, I reject your ability to objectify, sexualize, or body shame me; I reject the pressures of society telling me I need plastic surgery or Botox. Rather, see me for my ideas, my character, what's inside my brain. Aden told Allure : "I have much more to offer than my physical appearance, and a hijab protects me against 'You're too skinny, You're too thick, Look at her hips, Look at her thigh gap.' I don't have to worry about that. Society puts so much pressure on girls to look a certain way." Halima depicts perfectly how most hijabis feel: that their hijab is simply an extension of their beliefs, strength, and grace as a Muslim woman.

Though representation is extremely important to me, and I'm proud to wear the hijab, I don't want to be solely defined as a "hijabi vlogger." "Hijabi" is not the first word I would use to describe myself, therefore it's not how I'd like to be defined. I recently sat down with a few other bloggers who felt the same as me. Some felt as though it's important to have the word "hijabi" in the title of their YouTube channels, blogs, or Instagram accounts. Others, like me, felt it extremely unnecessary. While I respect and celebrate other women who do choose to make their hijabi identity a key part of their videos, for me, it feels as though I'm being placed in a totally different category when the "hijabi" title comes up. The reality is that we're normal people who love what we do and want to share our passion with our audiences.

It's a huge step for hijabis to be noticed and celebrated in the media, and I'm both proud and honored to be witnessing this progress. But, please, remember that the hijab does not define us. I'm more than willing to shed light on why I wear the hijab to anyone who asks with genuine respect. A question I am always asked is, "What is it like to wear the hijab in the US?," and I'm always tempted to respond with something like, "How does it feel to brush your teeth in the morning?" You don't think twice about it. It's a part of my routine like it is a part of me. I can't speak for everyone, but the hijab has quickly become second nature to me, and I can't imagine leaving my home without it.

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As part of the Arab culture women wear a cover or “hijabs.” Christian and Muslim women commonly where some type of head covering as part of their cultural beliefs. These covers vary in coverage as some cover their heads, faces, neck area and more. This form of cover may also mean you conceal your body shape and wear proper or cultural clothing. Women who live in this culture may be raised to share religious beliefs behind their culture. This includes having a preserved look that is modest in nature in line with what they believe God wants for women.

Muslim women have a number of reasons behind why they wear hijabs. A few believe this is how God wants them to be seen. They believe God wants women to cover up in this way to fulfil his commands. In other words, it is a personal way they choose to commit or devote themselves to God and his ways. This may mean they have unique faith in God and want to do what is necessary to make Him happy. There are other Muslim women that decide to cover up for more religious reasons besides devotion to God.

There are Muslim women that wear hijabs because of their Muslim faith. They believe it is a part of their identity that makes them more distinguishable among others. There are men that also where similar coverings, but there are times they have been questioned. For instance, the September 11 terrorist attacks have caused many people to mistaken someone from the Muslim faith wearing hijabs and confuse them with Islam and their identity. Unfortunately, some Muslim women have been physically harmed upon wearing this covering due the misunderstanding, but many continue to wear the covering out of spite of the stereotype.

Muslim women have been able to use their covering to help promote their culture and give more understanding about how they live. They are seen on political platforms and social opportunities providing more insight to reduce prejudice attitudes. Women have been able to stand up for themselves while feeling more confident in their place in the world, even though they still face a number of political challenges. There are Muslim women who choose not to wear such coverings simply because they feel they can show their faith and values with other options. Some feel the coverings bring on unnecessary attention that can be avoided.

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Last Updated 20 Jun 2022

Hijab in the Muslim World

Being raised in a society where people generally tend to think Muslim female are forced to wear the Hijab “headscarf. ” I was five or six years old when I started wearing the Hijab it wasn’t my parents who forced me to wear it was my choice. My mother also said if you don’t know the reasons you wearing the Hijab then don’t wear it at all. However, women who wear the Hijab face major discrimition in regard of employment opportunities. But in other part of the world as shabina state “Hijab hits runway. Even though Hijab is popular in the Muslim world I also learned that France and other European countries were trying to ban the Hijab. Also note that France has a lot of Muslim immigrants.

These countries have no right to ban the Hijab because they did not conduct studies on this topic. According to the Quran it states by saying “O Prophet! Say to your wives and your daughters and the women of the faithful to draw their outer garments (jilbabs) close around themselves. (59:33) one cannot judge religion or culture well enough to make a favorable judgment. Judging isn’t something everyone can ignore. For Muslim women, wearing the Hijab is a sign of reverence, modesty and submission. However, many non-Muslims view the head scarf and modest clothing with confusion, even taking offense at what seems to be restrictive, anti-feminist clothing. Since girls and women of all ages wear the Hijab, questions are being asked in the schoolyard or office about this. n the western society, most women have this idealogy that women should look beautiful to attract men. most western women would have hard time understanding the reason behind why muslim women wear the hijad. The reason behind wearing the Hijab is to keep the men from staring. When Prophet Muhammad was spreading the word about Islam, women just covered their heads with a scarf that still showed their chest, neck and ears. However, Allah later directed that women should cover all parts of the body except for the hands and face.

Prominent Muslim scholars distilled these teachings into an easy-to-follow method that uses the scarf, or khimar, to conceal immodest parts. However, two-third of Muslim women know they will be refused for work the reason being they are wearing the Hijab. there is study conduct by Ghumman shows women who wear the Hijab tend to have low exception when it comes to a receiving job offers than a Muslim female without the Hijab. even if they are given the job the interaction with the clients are minimum.

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It won’t be that hard for muslim women to compete in this year olympic. the international weighlifter federation (IWF) changed the rule to allow muslim women who are covered and wearing islamic dress to compete. These muslim women from the United Arabs of Kingdom wil be making history in the london olympics. allowing these women to participate in the competetion, it would allow other muslim covered women to not feel alienase walking around the airpot or the mall. Hijab style has changed dramactily as time went by.

In the modern world, many Muslim women try to find different styles to wear the Hijab. For example if one lives in western society they tend to adopt the culture that surrounds them. “Over time, women began personalizing how the covered--shortening and tightening their coats, donning smaller scarves. The market responded by producing more fashionable clothing choices--scarves with sequins, tassels, and bold patterns; fashion shows demonstrating the latest in Islam....... (Hijab hits runway By shabina Khatri ) To add to that there are 7 different kind of headscarf. The Hijab comes from a myriad of styles and colors. This type most commonly worn in the West is a square scarf that covers the head and neck but leaves the face clear. The khimar is a long, cape-like veil that hangs down to just above the waist. The chador, worn by many Iranian women when outside the house, is a full-body cloak. The niqab is a veil for the face that leaves the area around the eyes clear. However, it may be worn with a separate eye veil.

The burka is the most concealing of all Islamic veils. It covers the entire face and body, leaving just a mesh screen to see through. The shayla is a long, rectangular scarf popular in the Gulf region. The al-amira is a two-piece veil. As I had already wrote, being raised in a culture different than yours you tend to change your view of point. If a person lives in turkey they think wearing the hijab is more suitable than woman who lives in France will feel discriminated. I also conduct a survey on six people on their view of the Hijab.

Some of the question I asked were there age, gender, if they knew what the Hijab was, if it was a religious or cultural practice, if they thought this was a religious obligation, if they thought Muslim girls were forced to wear. Four under the age of 18. One was 18 and one person was over forty. They all knew what Hijab was, three thought it was cultural practice, the other three said it was a religious practice 5 people said Hijab was an obligation. The last question two preferred not to answer it out of the four who answered said yes we as Muslim girls are forced to wear. The other two said no.

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college essay about hijab

College Apps: Sure You Want to Say You’re Muslim?

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It’s Dec. 8, 2015: The time of year where either many high school seniors are getting ready to send off their college applications or are anxiously waiting for their early decisions on Dec. 15. I am one of them. As any ambitious high school senior, this year was where I could make it or break it. I had worked hard to get to this point: I was at the top of my class, pursued my passions and felt content with where I was. I tried to do everything right. But I did have fears and insecurities; maybe my test scores were a little low? Did I sound a bit too arrogant in my essay? Did I overlook any grammar mistakes? Normal qualms and concerns. As I checked my phone last Wednesday, I would have never thought this normal fear of mine would become bigger than ever before — that it may even consume me. As we all know, another heartless attack took the lives of innocent people in San Bernadino, Calif. When the media had quickly reported that the shooting is suspected to be orchestrated by three strong-built white men, I breathed a sign of relief that it was not in any way connected to Islam or ISIS, but still felt horrible that such events have become commonplace. A few minutes later, the story had changed for the worse and the shooters were reported to instead be a couple — two Pakistani Muslims who were in some way motivated by ISIS to carry out the attack. By then, 14 people were dead with 17 wounded. I had by now become pretty numb and hardened by this revelation. At that moment, I thought this attack would have the same affect on me as the Paris shooting. I would once again have to be extra careful in public, crowded places. I was relatively in a pretty safe community and my only fear in that week would be the safety of my friends and family elsewhere. But when I came home that day ready to resume my college applications, my father came up to me and spoke of an issue I hadn’t really thought about. “Beta, I was thinking about your college essays and… with the recent shootings, I think you might have to be a little more careful.” A blank stare. “I know that your hijab means a lot to you. Maybe you can focus on something else in your essay?” “It’s not a good time for Muslims. This happened in California — and I know how much you want to go there.” This question had definitely risen in my mind before but as always, I didn’t think it a huge concern and deemed it ridiculous that a top institution would discriminate against me and deny admission based upon my religious beliefs. But as soon as I saw the grave expression upon my father’s face and his fears and worries for my future, I realized that such a concern could not be put aside any longer. The shooting and my top choice of school coincidentally happen to be in the very same state of California. Dec. 15 is decision day. Could this have an effect on their decision? “One of the shooters was a woman. I know we should not read into this, beta, but this is one of the very first times that a shooter has been a woman — a woman with a hijab — like you.”  Like me. But this woman was someone else. We don’t know the motives behind her killings. For all we know, this attack may or may not have been motivated by ISIS. Does the fact that she wears a hijab mean that she happened to represent the entire female Muslim population? Of course not! “But do you, even for a second, think they believe that?” Was I sure I wanted to say I was a Muslim? How do I know that the person reading my application wasn’t a Muslim-hater? For the first time in my life, my fear of not getting into college was not because of my disabilities but was due to something completely out of my control. It would be impossible to change my other essays and remove any mention of my identity has a Muslim hijabi woman — it’s everything about me. It encompasses my dreams, motivates my passions, inspires my aspirations. This is why I am a writer for in the first place. As I pondered over the subject for days and later expressed my fears to my elder Muslim friends and my cousins abroad, they tried their best to assure me that whatever would happen would be for the best. Yet they could not tell me that what I now believed to be true was wrong. As I reread my essay, I was confident about one thing: I’ve never found the hijab to be a barrier or restriction in acquiring an education. It does not deter me in the slightest that I happen to be the only hijabi in my class. In fact, I play on the school basketball team. I compete in nation-wide science leagues. I debate Model United Nation resolutions. I would represent my class in middle school and later in 10th grade in the student council. I’m a volunteer. A sister. A friend. And through my journey of wearing the hijab for 10 years in various schools in Washington State, Virginia, Qatar, Dubai and New Jersey, I always strive to prove to myself, my family and to the whole world that a Muslim woman can indeed make it to the top — and there are signs of it abound. Although I will always be disheartened by the negative portrayal of my religion on mainstream media as I am at this very moment, I know that this perception cannot be changed until I do something about it. And because the hijab is indeed something observers can never disregard, I know that there’s a direct link drawn between my actions and my religion. When most people look at me, their first thought usually is something along the lines of “oppressed female” or “barbaric terrorist.” Therefore, I’m always aware of what I am doing and what I say. I and hundreds of other Muslims are under scrutiny. But we make the most of it. We  would not and could not in a million years sacrifice our identities for what other people conceive. My religion did not condone the attacks and there are bad people in every religion. The shooter wearing a hijab and myself — we are not the same. She did not represent my religion. She does not represent me. — Image provided by the author.

By Marwa Abdulhai

All the best on your academic career. Yes, the person reviewing your essay may pull their bias into their determination. OR the person reviewing will see you as a whole person…saying what needs to be said in today’s climate. Congratulations.

As a fellow Muslim sister I often have the same fears. However, as a university student I now know that all I can do is show the world that not all Muslims are the same. My hijab is a part of me, and to hide that part of me would result in someone that isn’t me. From one Muslim sister to another I wish you good luck and congratulate you in your pride of your faith and hijab. Thank you for sharing 🙂

Artifacts of all religions, including the hijab, are mere symbols. Where some see a symbol of faith, others see a symbol of the subjugation of women. Both may be true. Overcome fear by living your life with love, dignity, and generosity of spirit. Blessings.

Artifacts of all religions, including the hijab, are mere symbols. Where some see a symbol of faith, others see a symbol of the subjugation of women. Both may be true. Overcome fear by living your life with love, dignity, and generosity of spirit, and in so doing, inspire those around you to respond in kind.

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college essay about hijab

Free Hijab Essays and Papers

college essay about hijab

Islamic culture, women beyond the age of puberty are required to wear what is known as the hijab, in public. Hijab is worn differently in different parts of the Islamic society, but the main parts associated with the hijab are the headscarf, the abaya, and the niqqab. The way the outsiders and the insiders view the Islamic dress code for women in the Islamic culture is very different. When outsiders view the hijab what they see is something mysterious and unfamiliar. They do not understand the reason

Hijab Analysis

woman is. She argues that it is better to not a wear a hijab, than to wear a hijab and disrespect it. Another Muslim woman, who had recently started wearing a headscarf and is an Economics major, argues that both being a good Muslim and being modest is equally important for both Men and Women. Men also have the duty to lower their gaze, which is their part of hijab. When it comes to Women, they are commanded to cover their hair. She argues that hijab is not just about head covering for women, but extends

Faith and the Hijab

origins of the head coverings, are there obligations? Do all woman have to wear the head coverings. Why are there several different head coverings? Finally what objections are there against women wearing the head coverings? Why Hijab and the Origins The word hijab translates into to hide or to conceal. It is a head covering, usually a scarf, that covers the hair and the bosom and at most times leaves the face exposed. The origins go all the way back to the prophet’s time, when the Quran was being

Importance Of The Hijab

Why is the hijab culture used and cherished by many Muslims around the world? The hijab is important because of key characteristics like modesty, protection, religion, sacrifice, expressing one’s self and being different. Modesty, the most important thing about the hijab, is having Muslim women cover up and protect her body. Protection and religion tie in with modesty a lot more than the rest and both have essentially the same bases, with religion putting the hijab on is protection from harm such

Hijab in the Qur’an: The Beginning

Hijab in the Qur’an: The beginning Woman has to struggle to survive in this world. Woman faces variety of challenges everyday starting from cultural to economics. It is even harder to live for a Muslim woman when she is hijaabi. Wearing Hijab is a very popular thing among Muslim woman just as wearing Turban for shikh man. Hijab may seem like a simple head cover, worn by Muslim women for many years, but it is very meaningful to a muslim women. The word hijab comes from the Arabic word “hajaba” meaning

Essay About Hijab

Why women wear hijab? Hijab is a headscarf that covers the head, which is worn by a Muslim female when around unknown men outside of their family. According to the term “hijab” in an Arabic word which means a traditional scarf worn by Muslim women to cover the hair and neck and sometimes the face. In the Quran, Muslim women are told to dress modestly and cover their breasts. There are four different types of head covering, but the purpose is the same. Quran does not require women to

The Hijab: Fabric of Freedom or Fabric of Oppression?

The hijab, by definition, is the traditional covering for the hair and neck that is worn by Muslim women, but over the years it seems to have become more of an identity. People view the fabric that covers the upper half of these women as a culture shock when it is actually tied into religious factors.. There are a multitude of ideas and questions that people want to understand when it comes to the practice of Islam, and the hijab is usually a topic of discussion. “The literature on the hijab is arguably

Fear of the Unknown: France vs. Hijab

distaste towards Muslim females wearing the hijab, or religious headscarf as well as other religious items of clothing such as the niqaab (or religious veil) and the burqa (long coat which covers your clothing). On the basis of secularity many Muslim females have been denied educations, public appearance, as well as citizenship. The controversy first aroused in October 1989 at Gabriel Havez middle school in Creil. Three female students were asked to take their hijabs off in the middle of class, and upon

Hijab: Symbolism In Islam And Islam In The World

is ordinary seeing woman in a veil in countries where the majority of people are Muslims. Even though, the picture of “Hijab” is not strange because it was known in previous cultures before Islam, it is considered as a phenomenon especially in the western societies which it still carries many of misunderstood thoughts. Some People who are non-Muslims in United States view “Hijab” as a fundamentalism, fanatics, barbarism, oppression, retro gradation, and terrorism image. Wearing the veil raises many

Veiling the Truth: A Look at How the Hijab is used as a tool of Oppression and Resistance in Iran With Comparisons to Indonesia

question as my own. Women have always been thought of as something that needed to be controlled in Muslim culture. Their bodies are a source of shame that must be covered during prayer and also in the public (Mir-Hosseini 2007: 3). Veiling, done by a hijab or chador, is when women either wear a headscarf to cover themselves or they wear a veil that covers their entire body, excluding her hands and eyes (Mir-Hosseini 2007: 1; Mir-Hosseini 2003: 41; Berger 1998: 93; Smith-Hefner 2007: 390-391; Brenner

Hijab: The most important Dress code of Muslim women and girl! "O children of Adam, We have brought down to you garments to cover your private parts, as well as for adornment, yet the garment of reverence is the best. These are some of God's signs, perhaps they will remember.” (7:2) Introduction: Why does Muslim women/girl have to cover their heads? This question is one which is asked by Muslim and Non-Muslim alike. For many women’s/girls it is a truest test of being a Muslim. The answer to the

Muslim Culture

The use of the hijab is one of the most misapprehended traditions of the Muslim culture and is constantly looked down upon by many in American society due to misunderstandings about the relationship between Muslims and terrorist attacks. The hijab is a veil that covers the head and chest, and is usually worn by Muslim women starting on the day they reach the age of puberty. It needs to be worn when in public with the presence of adult males and non-Muslim females. In Muslim culture, a woman’s body

What Is The Visibility Of Ethnicity In Emma Tarlo's Visibly Muslim?

shopping in the cities, and going to the schools (Saeed, 2007). There is no doubt that the increased visibility of Muslims has been a matter of some interest (allen,2010). The French have banned people wearing markers of Muslim religion, such as the hijab and niqab, in public, and many Americans have protested against mosques and other expressions of the religion. In addition, numerous Westerners have a stereotyped image of Muslim visibility, for instance, assuming that all Muslim females wear the same

Essay On Worn By Muslim Women

The “hijab” worn by Muslim women seems to cause a huge amount of controversy. There are many other words that the piece of cloth goes by: chador, abaya, niqab, burka, etc. The women who wear it say that they “value their bodies more than anything and simply don’t believe in showing skin.” In the three different writings that I read, I realized that each author wrote on similar views. The first piece of writing that I read was an essay titled “My body is my own business”, written by Sultana

Essay About Head Scarf

informed her about this. When her father learned that this was required form of dress for Muslim women, he would encourage her to wear hijab, but never did force her to do so. Do you regret your decision to wear the hijab? Explain. Out of the four girls, the one studying business said that she regretted her decision of wearing the hijab, and she doesn’t regret taking the hijab now. She further said, that she will wear the headscarf again sometimes in the future, when she is ready to do so. She wants to

visibly muslim

Hijab has a literal translation into the word “veil” and it was originally implemented by Allah in order to secure Mohammed’s privacy and create a distinction between the public and private spheres of his life. The word hijab applied to both men and women in terms of protecting both their private lives from outsiders and to protect one's own honor, not in specific relation to one's sexual activity or desires. Say to the believing men that they should lower their gaze and guard their modesty: that

queens of islam

What is Hijab? Muslim women cover themselves by wearing Hijab. Hijab, which is also known as the veil, is the Islamic dress for women consisting the head covering, along with the body covered modestly. In Learning Islam 2, according to historians, the practice of Hijab was “part of [the] everyday dress for women in Ancient Christian and Jewish communities”(D32). Back then, many Christian and Catholic women wore a head covering as a sign of chastity. We can also see that there are references to the

our selves. To get a first hand perspective, I am choosing to study Muslim women from the Middle East and their interactions with other people. Today, there is a growing population of Muslim women in the United States. Many of these women practice hijab, a head scarf, or niqab, a full face veil. Like every America, Muslims are allowed the right to practice freedom of religion and not to be discriminated against because of religion, race, gender, etc. The following are laws that protect these rights:

The Veil is not Mandatory in Islam

relate to the hijab (veil). A few debated that is not fard (mandatory) and only Sunnah (choice). The majority though won and it was decided that the hijab is mandatory in Islam based on verses in the Qur’an and hadeeths said by the prophet and passed on by others. Misinterpretations can be made, although by the majority at times, and I think they made an incorrect assumption in this matter. Nowhere in the Qur’an is it stated that a woman should cover her hair. Some may say that the hijab is clearly

Wiley, 1975. ---. {The Veil and the Male Elite}. New York: Addison-Wesley, 1991. Nashat, Guity, and Judith E. Tucker. {Women in the Middle East and North Africa}. Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1999. Parker, Kim. "Women, Islam, and Hijab." {Emory University} Fall 1996.

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Definition Of The Word "Hijab"

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“A head covering worn in public by Muslim women,” states the Oxford Dictionary, when asked to define the word ‘hijab.’ When looking into a word’s literal meaning, people tend to not have an issue, but once one goes deep into its symbolic explanation, misinterpretations arise. Following under this scenario, are two university graduates: Naheed Mustafa (“My Body is My Own Business – Facts and Arguments,” published by the Globe and Mail on Tuesday, June 29, 1993) and Catherine Meckes (“Wearing the Uniform of Oppression” ), who clearly have contradicting opinions of the hijab.

Mustafa’s understanding of the significance of the wearing of the hijab, which takes into account her personal experience as a Muslim woman, is better than that of Meckes, who simply co-opts Mustafa’s sayings to validate her own perception.

Everyone has the right to express their opinions without suppression. Yet, it is unacceptable when one crosses their limits and misuses this advantage of freedom of speech to degrade another woman’s rights on what she can or cannot wear.

Doctor Jennifer

Proficient in: Human rights

“ Thank you so much for accepting my assignment the night before it was due. I look forward to working with you moving forward ”

Meckes may be a graduate in journalism and have studied Islam, but these qualifications do not surpass Mustafa’s experience of living as a Hijabi woman. Mustafa’s entire teenage years were spent on trying to become the next Cindy Crawford and at the end of the day, she only found it tiring and humiliating to meet these impossible male standards of female beauty in the Canadian society.

In effect, the veil has always given her freedom: freedom from being judged by her looks, freedom from constant suggestions on how she can improve herself to be represented as the best example of “beauty” (2) and freedom from her physical person to play no role in her social life.

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“It gives [her] freedom.” (1) What gives us the right to question that? It doesn’t!

Meckes disregards Mustafa’s explanation and rather exaggerates it by assessing the hijab to take some sort of “twisted logic” (3). She implies as if there is some complicated mystery behind this cloth, describing it as a method to hide behind the bars, so that one does not have to deal with reality, as if the women are entrapped in a cage. Little does she understand that, Mustafa finds it to help face her reality of being appreciated and respected for the contents of her personality and not her appearance. In fact, it seems as if Meckes is using some sort of method, or in her words, a “twisted logic” to put her fear out of sight.

Living in the 21st century, Meckes finds the sight of women covering their faces to be “disturbing,” “exotic,” and “mysterious” (3) and finds this as a reason for her right to have a negative connotation towards Muslims and the Koran. What’s ironic is that Ms. Meckes has mentioned that she lived in a Muslim country and ellaborates her understanding and sympathy towards the Islamic culture, yet still finds these women to be irritating in her sight. Perhaps if she took the time to learn more, she may be able to change her perspective to be a little less objective.

As a young woman, only in her early twenties, Mustafa faces racial discriminition in that she receives strange looks from strangers stereotyping her as either a radical terrorist or victimized Muslim woman. One wouldn’t be surprised to know if Meckes was a part of these strangers. Mustafa is often treated as an outsider and irked with questions in slow, articulate English, as if she doesn’t understand. As a woman, if she does not live up to society’s expectations, then she is ridiculed. If she lives up to them, then she is oppressed. Those of other culture attempt to make out her personality inside the veil, and paradoxically, the outer judgement shifts from her appearance to the cultural features of her personality. She speaks with such wisdom and experience, and consequently, understands the appreciations and values associated with the hijab, which Meckes lacks.

Mustafa faces disrespect and mockery, if she refuses to follow the ideal style of feminine beauty, which she considers as “oppression.” (1) Meckes manipulates Mustafa’s wordings and synomizes the hijab as a “uniform of oppression.” Afterall, what does oppression mean? Being oppressed refers to the state of being subject to unjust treatment. The unattainable Perfect-Body society is what makes those who are under the non-attractive category, being fat or having acne, to loose their self-esteem, just because they are just not thin or pretty enough. Yet, the non-Islamic public, including Meckes, finds Islam to be the one oppressing women? This must be a joke.

Why would half of the world’s population value a garment that oppresses and degrades a woman’s rights and freedoms? Hence, we cannot say that wearing the Hijab is a degrading attribute for women and that Islam is infesting the world with this garment promoting a mockery of liberation. Thus, I disagree with Ms. Meckes describing the Hijab, as backwardness, submissiveness and degradation. How you choose to dress yourself shouldn’t be the main focal point of judgements that are passed on you. Hijabs, and other garments, similar to Hijabs such as Turbans, aren’t a way of oppression. They’re also not just a piece of cloth that one decided to cover him or herself with. They bear much more meaning behind them, and blindly claiming it as a sort of oppression , are just caused by lack of knowledge, confusion or simply ignorance.

Wearing Hijab

Choosing to wear the hijab at a young age is unquestionably a battle. Knowing that you must conceal your beauty in a world where beauty is only valued, is unsettling. After weeks of contemplation, insecurities, and fear, I finally made the decision at 11 years old to wear the hijab/abaya. It wasn’t all rainbows and butterflies at first but through this religious journey, I have grown to love my hijab.

If you asked me a few years ago how I felt about my hijab, I would truthfully answer that I was embarrassed. I would tell you that I wore it for show, and if it were up to me I would have taken it off without a second thought. I would tell you that I felt hideous wearing it, being different from society’s social standards. Honestly, all I wanted was for my hair to be free. I wanted to be free.

I would wake up every morning and, as I pinned the cloth that sat on my head and put on the abaya that covered my body, I would groan, thinking of how much I wanted to be like everyone else. To be free of the judgemental stares and hurtful comments. Maybe it was because everybody I conversed to about the topic thought it was an impractical concept. Hair was meant to be let free. People would question, “Who’s enticed by hair? What’s the point, why wear it?”. They’d continually state that donning the hijab was a sign of oppression and told me I should just take it off. I would silently put my head down, embarrassed by what I looked like.

It was sometime over the course of my middle school years, that it hit me. Maybe I didn’t comply to society’s standards. What if I could be different? I didn’t need to display my body to be considered beautiful. I could be beautiful with my intellect instead. As said by a girl on the channel Talk Islam, I fell in love. I fell in love with the hijab because I came to understand that it was not simply a cloth draped over my body to cover beauty and preserve modesty. It was a physical manifestation of my submission and connection with my lord. An external representation of my internal spirituality.”

It had become my identity. When I learned the rationale for the hijab stated in the Quran. I was overwhelmed. Not only did it shatter my shallow perception of the hijab, it demonstrated to me God had validated my beauty. And from that day on I can’t imagine leaving my house without the hijab.

As Nusayba once said, ‘Wearing Hijab represents my freedom, my choice, not my oppression by the wants of men and media.’ I believe the hijab is a sign of modesty and freedom. It liberated me and gave me an identity. It has empowered me beyond any measure. I realized that while wearing the hijab I was judged for my thoughts and characters rather than my beauty. I was acknowledged for who I was rather than how I looked. I wanted to grasp any chance of making my bond firmer with my Lord, so I seized this opportunity. However, hijab isn’t simply concealing your beauty, it bears a far more profound importance. It’s about attaining modesty, embellishing our character, and having alluring patience. It’s a commitment, to never stop trying to seek God in everything, through everything.

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Undergraduate College Essay

Eyes shut. Deep breaths. Eyes open. It is the first day of freshman year. I switched to an Islamic boarding school during eighth grade, and now I am back to public school. It's time to reintroduce myself to the same people I knew just a year ago. The rush of emotions going through my head wondering what my old friends will say and if anyone will even remember me. I haven't spoken to anyone yet. I don't even bother going to my locker; I head straight to first period, Honors English 1. Looks like I happen to have classmates I know from before. To my surprise, they all look past what's on my head, and talk to me. Class began with the typical “first day” routine where teachers explain rules and assign seats. Suddenly the bell rings, and the excited, yet nervous freshmen all jolt towards the door with me following close behind. As the day continues with the repetition of first period, I finally get back on the bus to get home. I find an empty seat and start to get comfortable for the 40 minute bus ride home. While I was busy untangling my earphones, I felt my bag move closer to me. I look up and recognize an old friend. We begin a casual conversation about our first days, but I can see her glancing at my hijab every few seconds. For the first time, I explain the new me. “You're probably wondering what's up with the thing on my head.” She stares back at me with solemn curiosity, “I didn't know if I should mention it.” “It's called a hijab,” pointing towards my scarf, “It's a Muslim head covering, which is part of my religion. It represents modesty, so people won’t judge me by my appearance, but they’ll like me for my personality and character.” She looks at me with astonishment and replies, “It's different, but I like it!” Here I am today as a junior and as an early graduate. I proudly wear my hijab, as it is a symbol of my faith. The challenges and struggles that I endured trying to maintain my principles, as well as assimilate to American society, have shaped  me to become who I am today. My hijab has given me self-respect and has allowed me to value myself as a young woman. I have developed a sense of understanding for others' traits which make them unique. Not all reactions were as comforting as the one my friend gave me, but I will always have that moment to cherish and remember. My hair may be covered, but my mind is wide open.

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