what american women should wear in the middle east
There is a simple answer to this question, a complex answer.
First of all, the simple answer is based on my non-
Experts understand: Iran and Saudi Arabia (
Maybe somewhere else I don\'t know)
All women must cover this up by law and tradition.
You can go to jail for not being covered.
In many parts of the Middle East, especially in cities, neither Western women nor local women are covered up by law, but many local women wear robes and/or hijabs (
Some people wear the veil.
Westerners are advised to dress appropriately in order to respect local culture.
Most western women I see in the Middle East follow this advice, which is a mistake.
I attended a dinner party where American businesswomen looked as if they had recovered from Victorian novels: high neck and sleeves.
But \"Do you have to hide it?
\"This has become a more complex issue because I have been to this area 15 to 20 times in the last three years.
Americans tend to see -- and may be used ---
The Middle East, as a place, is not.
The treatment of women, and the question of what women wear, is at the center of this distorted narrative, and too many Americans are willing to keep it.
In Jordan, when I first went to Jordan, I followed everyone\'s advice and looked Victorian like everyone else: I bought some long dresses, skirts and long dresses
Long-sleeved shirts, despite the hot weather, still wear them, feel a little put on, and feel a little sympathetic to women wearing abayas.
When people ask this question, \"Do you have to cover it up in the Middle East?
Most people think the Middle East is a big place.
In fact, it is a region of 22 countries, many of which have very different governments and cultures.
In Jordan, you\'ll see a wide variety of women\'s clothing, ranging from tourists with few clothes to women wearing Western clothes and headscarves.
Some women in robes and some in villages and refugee camps are almost completely covered, with only one seam to pass through.
I see injustice, especially when I see the last one: it\'s really hard to work when you\'re tied, and in the heat all the black is
Why do women choose to wear abaya in a country where there is no law forcing them to do so?
Then, on one of my trips, I went back to my hotel room and was in pain in the heat-I realized I was wearing spanx and high heels and I often had meetings with tall men, so they don\'t talk to me.
We do what we need to do to be successful in any parent-teacher culture we are born in.
As I travel more and more, I understand that most of the Middle East people I meet are easy to accept my American differences, and I relax and start wearing more regular American clothes, casual pants and shirts with one or two buttons at the top, and V-
Neck or small sleeves at night.
They said the people in the Middle East I met were eager to reassure me that their area was safe-even safer than the United States.
It is true that I do not feel threatened in some parts of the United States, such as the city streets after dark.
I am also less typical than I am in the US or Europe where, no matter what I wear, some men and women talk to my chest.
I do feel very inappropriate in an Orthodox Jewish community in Jerusalem, and after my car is out of oil, when I need help, no one will talk to me, and not at all in Hamas.
I had to sit in the back seat of the car and stay away from the people driving and control Gaza.
At a large conference table in PalTel, I had long-term and effective protection with women working in the largest private sector employer public company in Palestine.
They are dressed in Western business clothes.
Some of them are Palestinians. American.
One of them, as I recall, said: \"women are sexy in the United States . \".
\"I feel more respected here.
Gradually, I relaxed, maybe too much.
On a very hot day in Petra, I wore a vest.
The beduines took me through the ruins on a donkey, took me off the main road, and suggested having sex.
When I said no, he got angry and started to take me up the hill.
\"Look,\" I said, \"I need to be very clear here: the answer is No.
\"I appreciate being able to get back on this road unscathed.
I think the danger has something to do with my vest and the expectations in his heart.
I want to tell my daughter.
In the United States, going to the bar to wear higher clothes will also arouse people\'s expectations.
When Americans ask this question, \"Do you have to cover up in the Middle East?
\"The implicit part of this is the sense of superiority: in this culture, many Americans consider women to be second. class citizens;
They are equal here.
We are very fortunate to support these laws in the United States, although our laws are not perfect, as Nicholas Kristoff has just written in a column about the United StatesS.
Laws that support child marriage.
Jordan has just abolished a law that allows rapists to avoid prosecution when they marry their victims.
Many other countries, even countries like the UAE that we see as allies, have shocking oppressive laws.
But women are second.
Class citizens everywhere, in part because women everywhere are often victims of violence.
Shirin Ebadi saidI has been reading about the hijab revolution, where Iranian women deliberately and seriously wear hijabs, slip away as a form of civil disobedience.
I have not been to Iran, but I met Shirin Ebadi, an Iranian lawyer and former judge, who won the Nobel Peace Prize for advocating human rights.
\"Do you think western women should go to Iran with their heads? ” I asked her.
In Saudi Arabia and Iran, Western leaders and wives of Western leaders with diplomatic immunity often face the problem.
This is also the case for foreign businesswomen who can often act in disregard of the law.
\"I urge them not to be blindfolded! ” she said.
Disclosure may be disrespectful to men and women of traditional Iranian or Saudi Arabia religions.
This is also solidarity with women who are oppressed by law or culture.
Which value do you want to make higher, respect or unity, and what risk are you willing to take for that value?
How big is your right to express yourself and your comfort?
The Egyptian matron walked into the hotel lobby wearing a white matron dress and immediately knew that I had offended people\'s feelings: the woman in a conservative dress was sent to pick me up, her face turned white. \"We are used to it with tourists.
Sometimes they wear the shortest shorts.
\"I didn\'t do it on purpose and would not do it again because my clothes made it harder for me to get in touch with people, so it was harder for me to do my job.
But the Egyptian and Lebanese entrepreneurs at the party I attended were surprised, but they were determined to be tolerant and let me relax.
When people ask this question, \"Do you have to cover it up?
\"Another meaning is that society in the Middle East is intolerable, where people do not respect the different costumes of strangers.
I have never found this: I am a stranger in the hospitality culture at the crossroads of the world, which means that I have more status than less.
I suspect that if I live in the Middle East or become a part of society there, I will be under more pressure to play the role of a woman, which may mean dressing up the role in some way.
Being an American stranger is a privilege, and it gives me some of the problems of being a woman in Middle Eastern society.
When the Americans ask me this question, one of the punctors at riyriyadh sometimes asks me, \"Do you need to cover it up ? \"?
\"It\'s out of mild curiosity and ignorance: less than half of Americans hold passports.
Sometimes, the question stems from politics and prejudice, in which case, whatever I answer, the question is followed by a scream of politics and prejudice, many \"thems\" and racial and religious slurs were used.
Sometimes, from well-thought-out people, it comes from an understanding of legal inequalities and profound patriarchal systems in many parts of the Middle East, if not practical.
Gradually, I feel that as a woman, it is my duty to connect with other women as honestly as possible, because it is usually by revealing ourselves in a world of one person trying to get out of a path, we will help others.
When I travel to the Middle East, I become more sensitive and make my friends and hosts feel comfortable by adapting to life there.
As an American woman, I have not given up my freedom and I have not-I hope-stepped on too many cultural mines.
At the same time, I am becoming more and more aware of what I feel my responsibility is when helping other women who are not as privileged as I am.
I feel more motivated to write articles about business women, which is more difficult to find and write stories, and more motivated to contribute to the cause of women.
When people are in a privileged position anywhere, they should act on behalf of women and extend a hand respectfully to help women and raise them to a level comparable to that of men.
If you are Shirin Ebadi, it may mean you will show incredible courage.
If you are a journalist, it may mean asking a young woman why she feels she has to wear a headscarf in hot weather or why she has to wear any uncomfortable clothes.
These questions are just to help her find her own answers and she will do so.
This may mean another thing if you are a puncture.
When I wanted to write this blog post, I heard about the new fashion of body piercing in Saudi Arabia, one of the three articles I reported on the Middle East, tattoo is frowned, but the body piercing is gray.
Angela Watson, who owns a black hole piercing device in Reno, Nevada, went to Riyadh and Dubai for pop music Lamb & Lu
A jewelry store owned by two young Saudi women.
\"They love piercings and there is no safe piercings in the area,\" she said . \".
In the four days of last October, Watson and his team completed a total of 450 times, most of which were done in their ears.
In Dubai, they traveled 300 times alone.
Watson has had a perforation since divorce in 1993.
She made the first hole herself-she has a few times now ---
Because it feels like a way to express yourself.
She opened her own business because she noticed that others also wanted to express themselves-she is now traveling in the Middle East and helping women there to do the same.
She said she didn\'t mind wearing abaya, except on the day she had to clean up her supplies when they were out of the way. “I love black.
I wear black.
\"I feel at home,\" she said . \".
\"Women wear the most beautiful kimono --style abayas.
When she first received a call to invite her to Saudi Arabia, the first question that came to her mind was, \"What should I wear ? \"?
\"This is the first question many women ask about the Middle East, which is a different place and we are used to fear.
This should not be the last question we ask about the people we meet or ourselves.
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