Islam vs. Islamism

Danny Hirshtal sends in an insightful piece from National Post regarding the Hijab – the headgear of Muslim women.

It’s a fascinating read, although I’m not sure how accurate it is. For example, the author claims, “It is not sanctioned anywhere in the Koran, the fundamental text of Islam, or the hadith (traditions) attributed to the Prophet.”

However, as cited in the above link, Qur’an 33:59 states, “O Prophet, tell your wives and daughters and the believing women to draw their outer garments around them (when they go out or are among men). That is better in order that they may be known (to be Muslims) and not annoyed…”

While the Hijab might not have been mentioned by name, and could have been instituted in the 70’s, it’s not such a stretch to make this “midrash halakha.” Also, I’m sure there are excellent comparisons to the laws and customs of Jewish headcoverings for both men and women. I find it interested that from one perspective the Hijab is a sign of “aparthied” but from another it represents a positive religious experience.

No doubt there is some social conditioning on both sides. Perhaps I can revisit this issue when I get to Chicago.

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