Hafsa Lodi, an American journalist, has been accoutrement actualization in the Middle East for the accomplished decade. She was built-in in New York City, and relocated to the UAE back she was alone 14 years old.
Lodi is absorbed by the relationships amid religion, ability and modernity. Her admission book book, Modesty: A Actualization Paradox, was launched at the 2020 Emirates Airline Festival of Literature, which explores the causes, controversies and key players of the all-around bashful actualization movement, and has accustomed analytical acclaim. She is additionally the architect of Modestish.com that provides breaking news, anxious assessment pieces and interviews with adorning women active the industry, and additionally offers administration services.
She took allotment in this year’s copy of the lit fest as well, which assured afresh while acknowledging with all Covid-19 basic measures.
How has women’s actualization acquired in the Middle East in the accomplished decade?
I don’t anticipate women’s actualization has badly afflicted over the accomplished decade in the Middle East – while countries like Saudi Arabia may no best accurately authorization abayas, bashful actualization charcoal allotment of the cultural bolt of the region, and abounding Khaleeji women adopt to accumulate cutting the civic dress – the abaya – admitting in modernised, abreast forms. Abayas these canicule are no best atramentous and cumbersome. Local designers are blithely re-imagining this cultural apparel in lighter colours, lighter fabrics and sleeker, added tailored silhouettes, suiting the lifestyles of women who accept added entered the workforce in the Arab world.
Modest fashion, meanwhile, has acquired abundantly on a all-around scale, and remarkably, in the West, area the words “modest” and “fashion” were rarely commutual calm a decade ago. Now, bashfulness is influencing the runways of affluence actualization houses, the abundance fronts of high-street retailers and, in a complete 180-degree turn, the actualization trends of your boilerplate American teenager. Back I was a boyhood active in the United States, abundant to my dismay, bashfulness was absolutely not advised fashionable, so the abrupt adverse amid actualization trends today, and the actualization trends of two decades prior, is what continues to ammunition my allure for researching and advertisement about the bashful actualization movement.
What is your book work, Modesty: A Actualization Paradox, all about?
Modesty: A Actualization Absurdity was a activity commissioned to me by Indie UK administrator Neem Tree Press. The book explores the all-around acceleration of bashful actualization from cultural, religious, political and feminist lenses, and uncovers the causes, controversies and key players abaft the movement, tracking the actualization bloggers, faith-based designers, hijabi models and affluence brands who accept all helped shaped this retail sector.
In February, we’re adulatory one year back the book’s publication, and it’s been a applicable time to barrage my latest project: Modestish – an online belvedere and agreeable hub committed to continuing the spirit of my book, back bashful actualization is an ever-growing movement with connected developments. Modestish.com provides breaking news, anxious assessment pieces and interviews with adorning women active the industry, and additionally offers administration services. Through my analysis while putting calm the book, it became aboveboard bright that while all-embracing brands and retailers were added entering the bashful actualization space, abounding of their campaigns and shoots were criticized for not absolutely apery the demographic they were gluttonous to target. So, Modestish offers brands able administration and assembly casework for their bashful actualization campaigns. We aloof launched our aboriginal shoot with Puma, featuring the brand’s new All-embracing Game collection, starring two Dubai-based actualization influencers, @Salima.oui and @SadafjKhan.
Give us a faculty about the abstraction of bashfulness beyond altered cultures, languages, and religions — haya (Arabic), Tesettür (Turkish) and tzniut (Hebrew).
From association leaders to women beyond altered walks of activity – anniversary of these cultures accommodate a host of altered definitions and interpretations of bashfulness – it’s actual difficult to generalise.
Modesty is built-in in the cultural traditions and religious scriptures of the Abrahamic faiths – Christianity, Judaism and Islam – and communities beyond anniversary of these faiths access bashfulness in assorted ways. But there are added similarities than differences! Added generally than not, religious scriptures emphasise bashfulness as a advantage for both genders to uphold, yet best communities abode the onus of embodying “physical,” or outward, bashfulness on the females. While aboriginal pious abstracts in these faiths generally covered their hair, abounding abreast adherents of these religions do not accept it to be binding for all women – and of those women who do awning their hair, absolutely a few do so to mark their political identity. Some conservative, traditionalists aural these communities accept that colours like red are “immodest”, some prioritise the bulk of bark covered over the form-fitting contour of the garments, and others accept bashfulness is added about one’s close demeanour than their alien appearance.
How can blind be a able actualization statement, as blind was followed by Greek, Roman, and Byzantine cultures and Abrahamic religions?
Veiling has afflicted women’s dress codes back time immemorial, at times appearance amusing status, and at added times, piety, beyond the Abrahamic faiths. Blind has additionally been a able sartorial account – from the ornately-wrapped turbans beat throughout history in African cultures, and loosely-tied arch scarves donned by Hollywood celebrities epitomising high-society allure in the 1960s, to the uber-trendy bashful actualization bloggers we see on Instagram today, who agreement with a deluge of beautiful arch coverings.
Which hijab-wearing women are top draws on Instagram and why?
Social media is article of a acrid brand back it comes to the bashful actualization movement. On one hand, the movement owes platforms like Instagram for its accelerated advance and acceptance – adept bashful actualization bloggers like Ascia Al Faraj and Dina Torkia can be accustomed for allowance to put bashfulness on the all-around actualization map. But on the added hand, what may accept started out as well-meaning intentions to blast stereotypes about bashfulness and access absolute representation of women of faith, in abounding means has become a chase to column selfies, access followings and acquire “fame”. Abounding bashful actualization bloggers on Instagram are aloof those – actualization bloggers, who artlessly column images of their accouterment and makeup. I like to anticipate that we’re all acceptable added careful with who we chase and who were “influenced” by, so I adopt afterward women who are accomplishing added with their lives than aloof announcement photos of themselves.
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