View Full Version : the hijab in a post apocalyptic world...

09-01-2010, 11:11 PM
I have a character who is a Pakistani woman in a post apocalyptic world.

She'd based on a friend of mine who is Muslim but not in a strict way.

I've never seen her wear hijab. My character, I had planned, wears it but loosely. the way we see women on TV wear them, like 40s movie starlets.

In my (internet) research it doesn't seem that this style is logical to anyone but TV producers. you either wear it or you don't...


(I'd ask my friend but how creepy is it to explain you're basing a character on you friend so you need more info about their thoughts ideas, ideals, etc.)

09-01-2010, 11:14 PM
There are many Pakistani women out there, observant to their husbands, but downright devilish, when loosed upon their desires.

09-01-2010, 11:19 PM
There are many Pakistani women out there, observant to their husbands, but downright devilish, when loosed upon their desires.
not really relevant and kind or rude/racist.

09-01-2010, 11:24 PM
Why is it rude and racist, since I've known many in London, who practise their religion from a two edged sword? Almost every religion has its followers, who adhere to the principles of that religion, but bubbling beneath that surface is another hot heart. There is no difference with Pakistanis. Everywhere on the globe from Eskimos to Tibetans to Australians there is the colour and different tempers to both nationality and religion, belief and morality. So, please, don't accuse me of being racist before you've considered what it is exactly what you're saying.

Kitty Pryde
09-01-2010, 11:30 PM
Have you done research into who wears one, when they wear one, how they wear it, and why they wear it? I mean more than just wikipedia. Your friend might be a good place to start--she's probably well informed even if she doesn't cover her head. Greater understanding of the religious and cultural values will help your character to be 3d and not just based on assumptions. I read a great book called "Does My Head Look Big In This?", about a teenager agonizing over her decision to wear a hijab full-time outside of the home.

On the other hand...why is she observing a human religion if she isn't a human?

On yet a third hand, it's postapocalyptic. So is her religion still being observed in the same way it was pre-apocalypse? If so, why/how? As society changes, religion changes with it. If her religion has changed, her religious values may not be the same as 21st century Muslim values.

09-01-2010, 11:42 PM
Good questions. and I was looking on a lot of Muslim sites, particularly those related to hijab style and such.

They are to preserve modesty and usually worn in public.

We'll she isn't really a fully established character yet. and she's a minor character. I don't want her to have this one thing that is just silly. or worse, offensive and distracts from the rest.

it's more reader values i'm concerned with.

09-01-2010, 11:46 PM
Depending on the nature of your post apocalyptic world, having a head covering of some sort might be eminently practical. There's a reason (aside from cultural) that scarves are popular in desert climates - they protect your head from the sun and can be used to wrap around your face during dust or sand storms, or soaked in water and worn to cool off, etc.

Maybe she's a practical sort of girl who gets a tweak of enjoyment out of co-opting a cultural garment for her own use. :)

09-01-2010, 11:49 PM
Oh i like that! it could also help to explain why she's kind of blase about if it's done right or not.

Kitty Pryde
09-01-2010, 11:53 PM
So, a supernatural critter passing in her community by wearing a hijab--I can buy that! So she's just doing whatever the women around her are doing, always wearing it in public to cover her hair. That makes sense to me. But how much does she need to pass? Wearing it incorrectly (according to her community) would attract attention.

Speaking of practical uses, the other day I saw a woman walking down the street talking hands-free on her cell phone--she had a Blackberry phone wedged between her tightly-tied hijab and her ear :D

09-02-2010, 12:06 AM
well she not there when she's introduced she's in Massachusetts so I guess I can pretend she did it right while she was there.

(in London I saw multiple burberry and louis vuttion patterned hijabs)

she's making more sense as think about these things...

09-02-2010, 12:08 AM
(in London I saw multiple burberry and louis vuttion patterned hijabs

You may have seen a myriad of colours, but colours hide desires and mischief in any religion or nationality.

09-02-2010, 12:26 AM
You might also consider that after the apocalypse the Koran may be reinterpreted. There are several translations or interpretations of the sura that is relevant.

09-02-2010, 12:30 AM
This sounds like a 'plot' developing in code talk. Lol!!!!!!!!!!

09-02-2010, 12:56 AM
I have a friend who is Muslim and she did not always wear her hijab, but then I didn't notice when she wore it versus when she didn't.

She was one of the most open-minded people I've ever met, and we actually bonded and became friends over someone else's misconception about what my religious beliefs are. She was actually the person in the room who got what I was saying because she didn't have the religious stuff the other people had in their heads that kept them from hearing what I was really saying.

She had no real knowledge of Christianity and I had no real knowledge of Islam, so we were both delightfully free to ask questions of each other without feeling that the other person was proselytizing or preaching.

Although I don't know what the Quran says about it, my friend was a lesbian and she considered herself married (marriage not being legal between same-sex couples is why I'm stating it this way) to a Buddhist. She had some horrific experiences when her family discovered that she was a lesbian.

She told me that her experiences with being persecuted by her family because of her sexuality strengthened her connection to her religion, rather than causing her to discard it or become bitter because of her treatment.

I suppose that like all other religions, you have people who go through the motions because that was how they were taught at home to behave, you have some who are "posers" for whatever personal reason (job security, desire to fit in with those around them), and on up in terms of intensity of belief until you reach full-blown zealot.

Zealots, statistically speaking, are found in every religion. (Yeah, I know I'm running a real chance of being told how wrong I am, and go ahead.)

I don't think that Carterpot's statement was racist, but perhaps it could have been stated a bit more clearly. Hijabs hide only the hair--but I've heard of many Muslim women who wear the full veils that have very elaborate makeup on underneath. And that they love wearing the very frilly and lacy undergarments. I suppose if I were limited by what I could wear on the outside, my own tendency would be to dress rather punk underneath. Matter of fact, I'd feel more free to wear what I'd want to under those robes since it would be a secret to everyone I'm meeting!

You have real potential for an interesting, dynamic character. Good luck fleshing her out!

09-02-2010, 01:11 AM
Carterpot the troll will now be leaving us.

09-02-2010, 03:07 AM
Don't be afraid to go out and buy a hijab, just to try it out. Sometimes, first-hand experience is the best way to find out what you need to know. I cover my hair occasionally with a netted snood (when I'm working or socializing with Orthodox Jews), although this isn't anywhere nearly as dramatic as wearing a hijab.

09-02-2010, 06:04 AM
Snoods are so neat. Always wish I could have worn one well, but I'm sure I'd just look like I was wearing an oversized hair net.

I have a feeling I'd not be wearing the lacy, frilly stuff. I'd be trying to get away with old gym shorts and old, comfortable t-shirt underneath. And I'd be thrilled to wear something on my head that would hide my lack of hair styling ability. Except that hats, wigs, and other things on my head make my head itch horribly. I'd be scratching so much people would wonder if I weren't hiding lice under there.

Seriously, Defyalllogic, the more I think about your character, the more intriguing it sounds. And wishing I were still in touch with my Muslim friend because I'd be asking her a whole bunch of questions.

We do have some people on the board who are either Muslim or who are familiar with the religion who might be willing to answer your questions, but you will need to decide exactly what questions you want answered. Can you nail down your questions a bit better and decide exactly what it is you're wanting to know?

09-02-2010, 07:26 AM
she might be pretty interesting. i hope so. She's not really Muslim either just, as jemma put it, co-optiong their culture. So i don't have many questions except if making that statement about wearing hijab would be offensive or bizarre...

she's not with any Muslims, she has a twin brother who dresses very western. (she's more indo-western in her style)

Additional information would likely be about the post apocalyptic Pakistan for which I'd probably need to ask my friend and consult a map about and then make up.