Monday, August 02, 2010

Iranian women's rugby team take to the field wearing modesty-preserving headscarves and tracksuits: do their bodies really need this much protection?

Iranian women's rugby team take to the field wearing modesty-preserving headscarves and tracksuits | Mail Online

I wonder about these burhkinis and other modest sports clothing. I know little about Arabic or Muslim culture, but what I have read suggests that body covering is to protect the women from:
lascivious thoughts from the men they encounter;
having their reputation tarnished by being seen as a floozy if they are not covered;
being judged on appearance rather than what they say or do...

and to protect the beauty and glory of a woman's body and hair for her husband (to be).

Now are these women really all so gorgeous that non-covering will reduce men to baying wolves? What value is their reputation other than in finding a husband - does it stop you getting a job? Doesn't judgement based on clothes not character happen anyway? They may not be seen as sexy and dim, but rather as prudish and uptight - which is worse?

As for retaining one's true beauty for their husbands, I find this offensive. A beautiful woman might save her beauty for herself, her best friends, her family, her God. Why is there this assumption that a woman must marry a man? Lesbianism is illegal, I assume. But is celibacy and spinsterhood frowned upon, too?

Maybe these women cover up so that they can revel in their own bodies alone behind closed doors and know that the secret of their bodily truth has been preserved.

As for the sporting clothes - I understand that getting Muslim women involved in such activities is hard, as they are seen as immodest in of themselves. What would these women (and their families) rather they be healthy and stepping outside cultural norms, or locked away and perhaps have a lower quality of life? What is more important to them? How they meet these doctrines or how their fit their life is? Is the worldly experience important, or is it the after-life (which will be good if they follow doctrine) that matters?

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