Thursday, July 26, 2007


This week's issue of Time magazine features a story on the new swimsuit revolution. Move over bikinis, tankinis, even one-pieces: the burqini is expanding the options women have of what to wear to the beach. Created by two Muslim women, the burqini is a burqa-bikini hybrid, a modest, "halal" alternative to clingy and revealing outfits, which have, at one time or another, left many a female--Muslim or not--in a panic before heading to the beach. According to the article, Muslim conservatives aren't the only ones flocking to purchase these full-body, loose fitting wet suits that cover everything except the hands, feet and faces of bathing beauties. The burqini has also found fans in Christian conservatives, senior citizens, and burn victims.

The Time piece also mentions that the burqini creators are getting anti-Muslim flak. The fact that many in the Western world view the burqa (the loose garment, featuring a veil with an opening for the eyes) and the hijab (the head covering worn by some Muslim women) as signs of patriarchal oppression of women in Islam is nothing new. What they fail to recognize, however, is that for many of these women, choosing to dress modestly is a deeply personal choice that is steeped as much in feminism as it is in religious beliefs. The handful of women I know who wear burqas or hijabs, do so to demonstrate their freedom from conformity. For these women, it is the Western world's cultural obsession with unrealistic and unattainable standards of beauty that is exploitive and oppressive. For them, the veil is liberating, it is empowering.

What it all boils down to, folks, is choice. I'm a Muslim woman but I don't think my wearing a one-piece or a tankini to the beach damns me to hell or makes me a slave to fashion. It's a braver girl than I who chooses to wear a bikini or a burqini.

More power to her, whatever her choice might be.


Anonymous said...

Ask your mom. Bet she'll tell you (if she's honest with you) that in fact most of your actions probably damn you to hell. But hey, like you said, it's a choice.

SabilaK said...

Luckily, my mom isn't an intolerant, ignorant, self-righteous asshole like you Anonymous.

Anonymous said...

Awesome post

bigahuna said...

Anon -
Seriously - CHILL!!!
I truly hope you are not a muslim, because it is the moralistic-I'm-right-you're-wrong mullah-wanna-bes that are dragging Muslims and Islam into a gutter. If you beleive our prophet(s) would use tactics of threats, attempt to humuliate of use misplaced guilt to put over a point - you need to go back and read some authentic hadith and take a hard look in the mirror.
And candidly your points are so full of good thinking and intention - quit being a wuss and use your real name, pinhead!

Juniper said...

I always learn something new in this blog. :)

Anonymous said...

Not the hadith you should be looking at. The Quran pretty much says it all.

Sabilak - tsk, tsk. Such language. Way to make your mom proud.

SK said...

Looks more like a diving suit!. But I agree, its all about choices..the more the merrier

Anonymous said...

Anon: Amazing that ignorant, idiotic, backwards, assholes like you who push their beliefs on everyone around them are still around. Guess I shouldn't be surprised though given what your kind has done to the good name Islam. So a bit of advice...and I apologize to my mom in advance for using this language..."FUCK OFF!"