Leadership Council for Human Rights

~ Feet in the mud, head in the sky ~

Monday, January 29, 2007

The hijab and Egyptian women

In a country with a prominent Islamist movement, roughly 90 percent of Egyptian women wear the traditional hijab, or head covering, The New York Times reported yesterday. The hijab is becoming more and more popularity and the ruling secular party in Egypt is wary of the underlying implications.

The majority of young women who wear the hijab are not following the same stringent rules when it comes to the rest of their clothing. Most are not wearing loose or baggy clothing to hide their figures, but instead, many young women are wearing tighter Western-style clothing. This trend reflects the possibility that many women are not wearing the hijab for religious purposes, but as a fashion statement.

The growing influence of the Muslim Brotherhood may be partly responsible for the growing number of Egyptians exhibiting increased attention to traditional religious values.

One Egyptian government official was recently rebuked for comments that the hijab is “a step backward for Egyptian women.”

With the recent increase in the prevalence of the hijab, many are worrying that there may be an increase in the number of women wearing the niqab, which is the black covering that covers the face and the body.

For the full article, click here.


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