In the western world we see scantily clad women on a daily basis, in newspapers, magazines, films, and on television. These women get a good wage and many are even considered role models; these are the lucky ones. The results of posing nude if you are Iranian or Egyptian, however, are very different. Recently there was uproar from the Iranian Islamist community when actress Golshifteh Farahani posed nude for a French magazine, stating her protest against restrictive Islamic codes. Many Islamists believe that women should dress modestly as that is what is written in the Qur’an; some take this to extremes and choose to wear a full veil called a hijab. To cast away these beliefs and pose nude was something Iranian authorities took very unkindly to and as a result Golshifteh Farahani was cast into exile.
Farahani was then joined by many other Iranian women in an online video and calendar to support a protest against oppression in the Islamic world that was sparked by 20 year old Egyptian student Aliaa Magda Elmahdy, who almost one year ago posted a full length nude photo of herself on her blog, explaining that it was her body and her choice to do so. As a result the student was denounced as a prostitute.
Maryam Namazie, who produced the calendar, described it as ‘a form of resistance’ against a religion that ‘demand[s] we be veiled, bound and gagged.’
It is only as their campaign gathers pace we shall see if it sparks a real change but until then these women are exiles from their country and outsiders of their religion so they need all the support we can give them.
Girl Museum Inc.