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Welcome to my blog. Here I share my successes and failures along my journey to becoming an anthropologist. My most prominent interest anthropologically are the new approaches to handing food security/healthy eating in the US, particularly in urban "food deserts". I enjoy the Anthropology of Tourism as well; combining food and tourism has scholarly promise. My other interests which have converted into anthropological hobbies of sorts include converts to Islam, diaspora of Muslims, and MENA in general. I also have some interest in historical archaeology.

I welcome comments, discussion and even respectful debating. I will however keep discussions to a respectable level. I reserve the right to ban anyone from this forum.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Hijab



Today I have a bunch of things to do while hubby is working. I have to read two chapters in my archaeology book and do the chapter summaries of them. Easy enough. I need to do a little cleaning of the apt and run some Sea World tickets over to a friend.

Anyhow, I have been thinking of wearing hijab. I think that would sealing the deal regarding my committment or lack thereof to Islam. I don't pray but I don't eat pork or dress immodestly. Once I do, particularly at school, I have to follow through.
What is my motivation? I want to be taken more seriously at school. I am a big believer that modesty is a way to do that. I just don't know if I am doing it for the right reasons.

I will say that my husband is NOT Muslim and never will be and may scoff at this choice. I mean, he won't fight me on it but...he won't be super supportive.
anthrogeek10

13 comments:

Aynur said...

Salaam, I saw you post over on ellen's blog. :) I say, if you want to wear hijab, you should. For whatever reason - to be taken more seriously is not a bad reason. As long as you're convinced, that's what matters. :) For me, my motivation would be to be accepted by other hijab-wearing Muslims. That's not enough motivation for me yet though, I personally would have to be convinced from a religious perspective. But if I had hijab-wearing friends I might be thinking otherwise. :)

Anthrogeek10 said...

Aynur,

Thanks for the insight. Are you a born Muslim (I didn't look at your blog)? I feel like Allah/God should be my true motivation and that what others say is irrelevant. Maybe that's bad?? I don't know. I also do not follow all the tenents and break Islamic rules. How can I be a hypocrite?

anthrogeek10

Aynur said...

anthrogeek10 - Nope, I'm a convert, I've been Muslim a little over 10 years, alhamdullilah. I actually think that Allah/God should be the primary motivation factor, and that's the reason I don't wear one right now. I think everyone has their own issues, what they need to work on. Some Muslims drink, don't fast, don't pray, etc. Does that make you not Muslim? No, it doesn't.

Anthrogeek10 said...

Salaams,

Thats wonderful you are a Muslim. :) I have done the fasting thing before and had no issues. I think I will do it again this year insh'Allah.

Thanks for the kind tips/words. I hope one day I will be comfortable in the deen.

anthrogeek10

Faith in Writing said...

I'd say God should be your motivation, but I don't think it's a bad thing to want to be more modest. I try to be more modest but then end up going for walks in tight track pants (sorry everyone..).. :)
Do you think your hub would eventually be ok with it? Is he interested in Islam or another religion (I think i saw somewhere that he is christian?).
I converted but I don't practice. I'm so afraid to peg myself into one hole. I love a lot of things about Islam but I'm not sure.... I don't eat pork though, and I rarely drink, save for about 2 pina colada's per year (I can hear the malibu and bacardi calling me from the back of my pantry but I don';t have any pineapple juice so that's out!).

Yeah, just if it feels right do it. But it would be hard to stop wearing it all of a sudden once you started, people may not take you seriously at all then. Unless you said you were doing an experiment, to guage people's reactions to you in hijab.
That could be a way to trial it...lol

desertmonsoon said...

I am a Christian and I don't eat pork or drink and not because I married a Muslim, I have always been like this even before I married him - even in Highschool and University when there was a lot of pressure to get drunk and party. I used to wear Hijab sometimes when we lived in Zanzibar, but I don't see it as a requirement for me all the time - but I don't mind wearing one either.

I don't think not obeying every single Islamic rule makes you a non Muslim if that is what you feel you are. My husband used to drink, commit adultery and lie all the time and stilled called himself a Muslim. He also used to pray at least 4 out of the 5 prayers a day.

I think you mentioned somewhere that your ex husband was a Pakistani? My husband was Muslim Punjabi (Kenyan National) - that didn't work out so well. Did you convert to Islam during your first marriage?

Anthrogeek10 said...

Faith in Writing:

"Do you think your hub would eventually be ok with it? Is he interested in Islam or another religion (I think i saw somewhere that he is christian?)."

I don't know if he would accept it or not. Yes, he is Christian and a strong one at that. he does respect Islam and is not one of the ones who call Allah "their own God" like alot of Americans. I have taught him about Islamic history and the basics of Islam. For example, I told him that non-Arabic speakers who are Muslim do not know everything they are praying due to lack of Arabic knowledge. He didn't understand how that would happen, and frankly I don't get that either.

desertmonsoon:

"I don't think not obeying every single Islamic rule makes you a non Muslim if that is what you feel you are."

Once I wear hijab, the glasses of wine are all over. lol I feel like converts are set to a higher standard don't you think?


"I think you mentioned somewhere that your ex husband was a Pakistani? My husband was Muslim Punjabi (Kenyan National) - that didn't work out so well. Did you convert to Islam during your first marriage?"

I am sorry your marriage ended. Yes, mine was from Lehore. I converted 5 years after the marriage ended. If you want to get technical.

anthrogeek10

desertmonsoon said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anthrogeek10 said...

He does not go to church. When you say "practicing", what are you referring to?

anthrogeek10

Chiara said...

I think your own relationship to your faith should be the deciding factor, but I wonder if you are feeling you would be taken more seriously as a student of the Islamic world if you wore the hijab, making you more identifiably Muslim, and identified as a "practising" one.
Modest dress can consist of modest Western clothing with no headscarf, or whatever level of cover you want.

Anthrogeek10 said...

Chiara,

I think sometimes, I am so worried about what my family would say, I let that get in the way.

I believe that wearing it in a Muslim country is respectful, required or not. I think that I would feel more connected to the people I am studying if I did waer it....

anthrogeek10

Chiara said...

I agree that cultural geography makes a difference, and I dress within the norms of the country or community, whether officially required or not--choosing from within the range of available options what I prefer.

Certainly as an anthropologist "on assignment" your dress would need to elicit the broadest confidence of your research subjects, without being deceptive about who you are.

Dr Nawal Noor, a McArthur fellowship winner, is a Sudanese American obgyn whose specialty is genital excision--repairing it, preventing it, teaching other Drs about it, researching it, etc. On her "Sudanese" clinic days she deliberately wears long sleeved, high collared, and long hemlined Western clothing (the community prefers a Western hospital setting and Western medicine).

Ah, yes, la familia, as the Italians say... LOL :D

Usman said...

This is me Usman from Lahore saying HI.
If you want, and if I could find your ex husband in Lahore, I will...., never mind..lol

"I feel like converts are set to a higher standard don't you think?"

I'm afraid Yes, unfortunately. BTW, among born Muslims, Converts are also regarded as more pious. We always expect them on the extreme. Either too good and pious, or just Muslims by declaration only. Unfair it may sound, but that's the way they are taken generally.