D I S C R I M I N A T I O N    &    N A T I O N A L    S E C U R I T Y    I N I T I A T I V E    --    B L O G
  DNSI Home - http://pluralism.org/affiliates/kaur_sidhu/
  Pluralism Project - http://www.pluralism.org
  Harvard University - http://www.harvard.edu

Saturday, October 27, 2007

An appeal to heart - and head

Muslim students distribute head scarves to foster an understanding of women who wear hijabs

For Kavelle Thorne, the most challenging part of wearing a hijab for the first time was figuring a way to get the earphones for her MP3 player on without dislodging the bright pink scarf covering her hair.

Luckily, Sajda Khalil, a veteran hijabi and organizer of the National Hijab Day initiative at the University of Toronto, was on hand. "You have to go under the scarf, not on top" she said, laughing.

Thorne, a third-year Caribbean studies student, was one of 70 non-Muslim women at U of T to take part in the cross-country initiative to encourage an understanding of the everyday experiences of a hijab-wearing Muslim woman.

Overall, those experiences are the same as any other woman, said Khalil. While most women face relatively few incidents of overt racism in multicultural Toronto, Muslim women on campus have been targeted in the past.

In March 2006, the university was forced to make a statement after incidents including a verbal attack on a hijab-wearing woman and eggs being dropped on two students with hijabs.

The impetus for this year's event was an attempt to open dialogue between Muslims and non-Muslims, said Khalil, a volunteer with the Muslim Students' Association.

"The hijab creates a separation between yourself and somebody who is not Muslim," she said. "People are more hesitant to just come up to you and ask you about it, even if they want to. That's why this kind of event makes it a lot easier for people to start a conversation, and makes them realize that there really isn't that much difference between me and them."

Third-year student Zarie Lorne wanted the first-hand experience of wearing a hijab. She wore hers on the TTC to university and felt conscious of the inquisitive stares.

"I've gotten a lot of looks, a lot of confused looks," said Lorne. "I think they're curious and want to ask questions, but they are scared."

Nicole Miller was worried that wearing a hijab for a day would be offensive to Muslim women.

"I don't know if we can really understand their experience by wearing the hijab just one day," she said.

The inspiration for National Hijab Day came after a McMaster University professor created an event last April to draw attention to discrimination against Muslim women. A week later, her office door was vandalized with graffiti. [Link]

Labels: , ,

DNSI     direct link     0 comments   Email post: 

Post a Comment

<< Home

About DNSI

The Discrimination & National Security Initiative (DNSI) is a research entity that examines the mistreatment of minority communities during times of military action or national crisis.

More Info:
DNSI Home Page

The Blog

Why a Blog?
The purpose of this web-log is to offer news and commentary in a fluid, dynamic format while our more substantive reports are forthcoming.

Recent Posts
Feds to ban veils at ballot
Anti-Sikh riot victims to protest in front of Supr...
Airline company wins appeal
Philadelphia Woman Sentenced for Federal Hate Crim...
Teens charged in assault on Sikh men, other attack...
AT&T Reverses Kirpan Ban After Sikh Coalition Inte...
State of Oregon Apologies to Sikh American Denied ...
Hate-crime fighters
Young U.S. Muslims struggle
Three face charges in mosque vandalism

04/01/2005 - 05/01/2005
05/01/2005 - 06/01/2005
06/01/2005 - 07/01/2005
07/01/2005 - 08/01/2005
08/01/2005 - 09/01/2005
09/01/2005 - 10/01/2005
10/01/2005 - 11/01/2005
11/01/2005 - 12/01/2005
12/01/2005 - 01/01/2006
01/01/2006 - 02/01/2006
02/01/2006 - 03/01/2006
03/01/2006 - 04/01/2006
04/01/2006 - 05/01/2006
05/01/2006 - 06/01/2006
06/01/2006 - 07/01/2006
07/01/2006 - 08/01/2006
08/01/2006 - 09/01/2006
09/01/2006 - 10/01/2006
10/01/2006 - 11/01/2006
11/01/2006 - 12/01/2006
12/01/2006 - 01/01/2007
01/01/2007 - 02/01/2007
02/01/2007 - 03/01/2007
03/01/2007 - 04/01/2007
04/01/2007 - 05/01/2007
05/01/2007 - 06/01/2007
06/01/2007 - 07/01/2007
07/01/2007 - 08/01/2007
08/01/2007 - 09/01/2007
09/01/2007 - 10/01/2007
10/01/2007 - 11/01/2007
11/01/2007 - 12/01/2007
12/01/2007 - 01/01/2008
01/01/2008 - 02/01/2008
02/01/2008 - 03/01/2008
03/01/2008 - 04/01/2008
04/01/2008 - 05/01/2008
05/01/2008 - 06/01/2008
06/01/2008 - 07/01/2008
07/01/2008 - 08/01/2008
08/01/2008 - 09/01/2008
09/01/2008 - 10/01/2008
10/01/2008 - 11/01/2008
11/01/2008 - 12/01/2008
12/01/2008 - 01/01/2009
01/01/2009 - 02/01/2009


Religious Diversity News-Pluralism Project

Into the Whirlwind
Human Rights in India
Ethnic Confusion Britain
Anil Kalhan
Sepia Mutiny

Feeds, etc.

(c) 2005 Discrimination & National Security Initiative 1531 Cambridge Street Cambridge, MA 02138