Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.
I think you are generalising from what is evidently the more tolerant view of the egyptian middleclass. I doubt they'll have the same view if the muslim brotherhood gain power.

However, the view of the islam from the west is more coloured by our view of the Saudis who would rather that girls were burned alive than be seen without a headscarf or the suffocation of mind, body soul afforded to afghani women in the name of islam.

Equally here in the UK we roiutinely hear the complaints of pakistani women speaking out against imprisonment and forced wearing of hijab.

In France, to gute from the wiki on ni poutaines ni soumaines

No more moralising: our condition has worsened. The media and politics have done nothing, or very little, for us.

No more wretchedness. We are fed up with people speaking for us, with being treated with contempt.

No more justifications of our oppression in the name of the right to be different and of respect toward those who force us to bow our heads.

No more silence in public debates about violence, poverty and discrimination

One of their four main headline demands is the end to the hijab. It matters in France. It is a matter of life and death in saudi Arabia and increasingly in Pakistan. It is a basic freedom in Afghanistan.

Yes, it is symbolic. There are worse things commended in the name of islam. But it is nevertheless symbolic, not of submission to god, but of utter submission to men. To challenge the hijab challenges the entire edifice of religious patriarchy.

keep to the Fen Causeway

by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Tue Jan 16th, 2007 at 07:52:26 AM EST
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