This is sad on so many levels.
The hijab is hot!
That’s the message two Upper West Side artists want to spread by encouraging women around the city to put on the veil and snap a selfie.
“Women who wear a hijab by choice are in complete control of their sexuality,” says Saks Afridi, who started the #DamnILookGood campaign with project partner Qinza Najm. “Here in New York, it’s very brave for a woman to wear one out in public.”
Conversely, in some countries it’s suicidal to not wear one.
Najm had started wearing a hijab around New York City as an experiment, just to see what it would be like. Though she was raised in Pakistan, she and her family members do not wear the traditional head covering worn by some Muslim women. But one day she put on a hijab in her Lower East Side art studio and went for a walk around the neighborhood.
“Someone started screaming at me to ‘Go home!’ ” Najm recalls. “I was surprised because I figured people in New York would have more tolerance.”
Well, this little event known as 9/11 still rubs some the wrong way.
She spent the next week wearing the hijab around town, and encountered more angry New Yorkers on the streets and subways. This aggressive reaction to a garment that’s quite common in many Muslim cultures prompted Najm and Afridi to do the project.
They launched it at the DUMBO Arts Festival last month, where hundreds of women put on the head covering and posed for selfies, posting them to sites like Twitter, Instagram and Facebook with the hashtag #damnilookgood.
“A selfie suggests you are feeling confident and good about yourself,” says Najm, who put her hijab back on for the project and posed with the other women.
Because nothing quite screams self-confidence by willingly covering yourself up or facing a beheading. Here are a couple of nitwits getting in touche with their 7th Century self: