Log in

The data are self-reported of course, and Hindus report lower rates of non-marital sex than do Muslims, yet the folks who did this study still conclude that "the burqa works" and then there are the comments which amount to "lol brown people are so anti-sex and rape little kids and bomb buildings 'cause they do that for fun rather than have sex for fun like white people do". And there's the lumping of Hindus and Muslims together, which doesn't make sense to me. And there's ignoring the fact that countries like India didn't necessarily /always/ have Victorian norms. I mean, look at Khajurao! That is one of India's UNESCO world heritage sites! Look at the Kama Sutra! Also traditionally Indian. And then there's this idea that white people are pro-sex while brown people are anti-sex, which also pisses me off.

At any rate, here's the actual article about it, from The Huffington Post. I did post this to ontd_feminism and ontd_political, both of which by and large tore the article apart. Anyway. As South Asians, and many of us ARE Hindu or Muslim, what are our thoughts?


yoga/meditation as escapism is a problematic concept; people tell me and other survivors to “heal” on demand so that the community rupture can be ignored. this is a new agey (and it's a total trip to see how hindu right wingers fuse these concepts) perpetuation of sexist abuse culture. yoga/meditation does NOT equal challenging abuse and disrupting power dynamics. the combination of rugged individualism mythology plus the expectation of women to be forbearing is gross.

Sep. 12th, 2011


South Asian Magazine for Action and Reflection has a series up about the last decade of U.S. militarism, Islamophobia and targeted immigrant communities.

ganked from an interesting fb thread.

tehelka's editor responds to critiques of slutwalk here:
Before You Slutwalk, Please Kneel

Someone else posted critiques of the urban/upper caste/class nature of the walk and also raised questions about the Kashmir angle:

"What is beyond doubt is that rather than messing itself up in the possibility of the sisters being security informers, the police and the government would find it far more convenient – and useful – that the killings be projected through t...he “promiscuity” angle. Sections of the media, local as well as from outside [including especially Tehelka], have only obliged the establishment.... The answers to the tragic story of Arifa and Akhtara perhaps will not be found completely in the circumstances of the murders that have devastated their family. But rather in the conditions in which they had lived."


Former Afghan MP Malalai Joya was on tour this week in the U.S. She also has a bio available ("A Woman Among Warlords").

Speech where she was ejected from parliament:

Criticism of U.S. Occupation

Let me know if you need a transcript. The Democracy Now videos come with transcripts.

Help make DC Desi Summer 2011 happen


Inspired by Youth Solidarity Summer in New York, RadDesi Summer in Texas, Organizing Youth in California, South Asian Summer Solidarity for Youth in Boston, and Desh Pardesh in Toronto, DC Desi Summer is a weekend-long leadership and empowerment program for youth. Spearheaded by the volunteer DCDS Collective, DC Desi Summer provides a radical and inclusive space for youth of South Asian heritage to examine key social justice issues and take action. The goal of the forum is to engage participants in critical reflection, coalition building, and activism. We believe that a united, educated, and inspired collective of young activists is crucial to creating social change both locally and globally.

The DC Desi Summer collective is currently conducting an online fundraising campaign on IndieGoGo. In order to cover all meals, space rental fees, and provide travel scholarships for the youth, we're hoping to raise about $2,200, all to go toward the cost of the event. We'd appreciate it if you would pass on the IndieGoGo link or website information to anyone else you think might want to support this initiative or to any youth who'd be interested in applying.

Please take a look and consider supporting this community organizing initiative:

You can learn more about DCDS at our website:

resource on activist abusers

Gender Oppression, Abuse and Violence: Community Accountability Within People of Color Progressive Movements

2004 Report from INCITE! Women of Color Against Violence

this section listed very accurately the behaviors i had encountered:

More on Counter-organizing – or- What is the opposite of accountability?

People who commit acts of gender oppression, abuse, and violence can add on all sorts of additional manipulative behavior in order to: 1) Make sure their victims/survivors don’t do anything back, 2) Make sure they don’t get caught, and 3) Make sure that if they do get caught they can get out of it. These 3 things are the opposite of accountability.
-          Pick someone who they think won’t tell or is not in a position to tell (vulnerable, powerless, young, feels guilty or responsible, is not believed by others, etc.)
-          Uses denial (Silence; I didn’t do anything; What did I do?)
-          Uses minimizing (It was nothing; It didn’t mean anything; I’ll never do it again; It was such a little thing; What—that?)
-          Tries to make them believe it’s their fault (You wanted it; you asked for it, you didn’t say “no”; you should have known; you liked it; you made me do it; you provoked it)
-          Do things when people aren’t looking or in ways that people can’t see
-          Act in heroic; self-sacrificing or other ways that will make people think they could do no wrong or feel indebted to them
-          Apologize and think that’s all they have to do
-          Get people to feel sorry for them
-          Start making excuses for their behavior (not to explain or understand, but to excuse their behavior and avoid accountability) (bad childhood, stress, too much work, too much responsibility, they’re so dedicated to the movement)
-          Quit or leave immediately if they think they have to take some accountability (not for the victim/survivor’s safety or because it’s the right thing to do, but because they want to avoid accountability)
-          Use delaying tactics until everyone gets worn out

-          Chronic abusers, harassers, rapists, batterers, etc who find one person (usually female-identified) after another to oppress and abuse
-          Abusive persons who “mentor” other (often less powerful or younger) individuals in order to exercise power and control over them or to take advantage of them

us media representations


"As Afghan cultural adviser on an LA film I thought I'd be heeded on its crude inaccuracies. I ended up a burqa-clad extra."

Nushin Arbabzadah

Read more...Collapse )
(All three stories via muslimahmediawatch)

Kendrapara mosque opens doors to women (source)

KENDRAPARA: Hundreds of Muslim women offered prayers at an exclusive namaz for females at Kendrapara's Minar mosque on the occasion of Eid-ul-Fitr on Saturday. Mosque authorities said the annual event was aimed at women's empowerment.

"Each year, Eid brings joy to hundreds of women from the Alhadis sect in Kendrapara as they offer special prayers at the mosque at Badahat in Kendrapara," said Ainur Haque, cleric of Minar mosque. "The mosque managing committee's decision is a bold step towards giving women equal rights," he added.

The women pray at the mosque every Friday. A thin curtain separates them from men, who also offer namaz at same time. The women put off their burkhas during the prayers. Minar mosque, however, is the lone mosque in Kendrapara district to allow women to attend namaz. "In rest of the 22 mosques in coastal district, Muslim women aren't entitled to perform namaz," said Mohammad Akil of Kendrapara.

Muslim women break taboo, offer Eid prayers (source)

MALDA: Fighting back convention, 1,000 women congregated at Hyderpur in Malda to offer Eid namaz on Saturday just like their male counterparts. Succeeding in breaking free from the shackles of male domination, the women gathered under the banner of Muslim Mahila Janakalyan Samity and prayed, led not by a moulvi but a woman from among them.

"We have been doing this for the last nine years. It is the first all-women prayer to be held in West Bengal. We are proud that women are coming out from behind the purdah. There were initial objections from male family members, but they have now accepted it," said Shamima Begum, who led the prayer.

It was not an easy task for Rabeya Biwi, Amina Khatun or Surama Begum. Mostly homemakers, the women had to fight all odds to step out of their homes. "It was very difficult to convince our husbands that we, too, had the right to pray," said Amina. To begin with, enlightened men of the community, who understood their need, arranged for a special prayer, exclusively for the women.

Initially, around 100 women gathered for the namaz. Soon the number swelled to 1,000.

Women offer namaz at Mangalore masjid, create history (source)

For these 15 Muslim women—as much as for the entire Muslim community—this Eid-ul-Fitr would be etched in history.

In a path-breaking event, these 15 women were allowed to offer namaz in a mosque on Eid-ul-Fitr in Mangalore on Friday on the directions of Karnataka high court. Mangalore, along with Kerala, celebrated Eid on Friday. History was created, when Noor Masjid opened its doors to the women, following the court’s orders to offer namaz in the mosque.

The women had earlier petitioned the court seeking to be allowed to offer namaz in the mosque after being repeatedly denied the right to offer prayers to celebrate Eid-ul Fitr.

The Noor Masjid managing committee is headed by Sunnis and they had opposed entry of women into the Masjid. But the Salafis – a sect in Islam – had argued that they wanted the women to be allowed to pray inside the mosque on Eid-ul-Fitr.

The high court in its order delivered to the Masjid committee directed it to allow the 15 women to pray, citing their names.
But when a few women who were not mentioned in the list sent by the high court also wanted to offer prayers, the Masjid committee disallowed them.

The copy of the court order was also sent to the Mangalore South Police station. The Mangalore South police inspector, Ramakrishna told DNA that “We have carried out the order of the high court to the last letter and allowed the 15 original petitioners to offer prayers at Noor Masjid.
This article is interesting but has inadequate context for my liking. I'm googling for more information but if anyone has any better links (in English for me or not in English for other readers) then please drop them in comments.


Bangladesh prostitutes win job title identity ruling

By Anbarasan Ethirajan, BBC News, Dhaka

The Election Commission in Bangladesh says prostitution will be recognised as a job title on new voter ID cards. Although prostitution is legal, it has not been given this kind of recognition until now. Campaign groups have welcomed the move, saying it will reduce difficulties faced by sex workers in offices and other public places. As in many others parts of the world, prostitutes in Bangladesh have faced humiliation and isolation for years. Aid groups say the workers have been stigmatised, insulted and beaten by clients and the police. The women work under difficult conditions, they say, and need to have more rights before society can give them due respect.

"Sex workers can mention prostitution as a profession in the voter identity cards," Election Commissioner Shakhawat Hossain told the BBC. "The commission decided to include it... following recommendations from human rights groups."

It has so far recognised only 25 professions but has decided to add more jobs, including journalists, priests and human rights activists. Officials say that the information will not be on the card itself, but stored on a bar code linked to a database which can only be accessed by the election commission. Campaign groups say there are an estimated 200,000 prostitutes in the Muslim-majority country and many brothels.

"The latest move by the election commission is a step closer to achieving social status...," Asif Iqbal, an official at the Protirodh Project charity, told the BBC. "Hopefully, it will make it easier to get admission for their children in schools," he said. Mr Iqbal said that sex workers with the new identity cards will now not hesitate to mention their profession in offices and public places.



South Asian Women

Latest Month

November 2012