søndag den 22. marts 2015

Ask me!

We all know what prejudice is, but how many of us actually have the guts to talk to the source we're curious about, before we go out and ramble about our preconceived notions of something? I invited 5 Danish Muslim women to the studio to talk about prejudices about Muslim women who wears a scarf. We talked about how it feels to be discriminated against, and what goes through their mind when somebody tries to tell them that wearing a scarf is suppressing against women. There is a lot of reasons why some women choose to wear the scarf besides the love for their religion, and they are diverse, but are all grounded in a wish for greater autonomy.



Asmae, 24 years old, studying public health & science at the University.

It’s kinda been a part of my life since I was very little. When I was young I went to a private school, so I really never met the prejudices that I knew existed. It wasn't until I started using public transportation and later on started high school, that I felt people looking. On a day like today where information is so easy to get, it’s also really easy to get the wrong information and thats why I’m here today, to inform others about the diverse reasons why so many Muslim women choose to wear it. You can call me religious if you want, I don’t mind, because that is who I am and I’m proud of it. And do you know what? When I joke and laugh, people quickly forget that I wear it.

 

Mona, 33 years old, Cand. Arch and has a MAA in architecture.
I wear it, because it’s a part of my religion and it is a symbol of my strength and identity. I went to a almost ”white” school and when I was in elementary school, I didn’t feel any resistance from the other pupils. It wasn't until I got older, that I felt what discrimination/racism was about. Once I was waiting for the train on the subway and when I was about to enter the train, some old lady punched me in the stomach! But I couldn't miss my train so I just tried to let it go. Another time I got yelled racist slurs by a woman, and I got chocked and was about to say something, but before I could a guy jumped in and screamed at the woman ”have a nice day!”. We looked at each other and started laughing.


Souha, 26 years old, Journalist
I started wearing it when I turned twelve years old, and it was my own choice. It was actually a Danish Muslim woman at a lecture who had converted to Islam, who inspired me to start wearing it. I could relate to her decision and the battle she had to go through. I missed something in my life that I could identify myself with and this just felt right for me.
The scarf has been the source of my strength and it enables me to be the woman I want to be. When I'm wearing it, I feel that I am able to release myself from all the expectations of what the ideal woman is supposed to be in society, and it gives me the ultimate freedom.

 

Lamies, 30 years old, cand. Mag. in language psychology.
People who talks on our behalf and claiming that it is suppressing against women, they need to go out more and meet the people who wear it. I’m sure if they did, they would get a reality check, but you can’t really blame them. I believe part of it is the media’s fault that some of these prejudices exist because people rely on the news to be truthful and morally right, but I guess positive news doesn’t sell as good as the negative one. I chose to wear it as a teenager because I needed to be true to my own values in stead of thinking too much of what other would say about it. I came to a point where I realized that by NOT wearing it I wasn't taking my own choices. The day I chose to wear it was the day I took my first step in taking my own choices in life, in defining who I am as an individual and in being more independent.

Natasha, 26 years old, a law student and a social & society debater.
It’s been a part of my life for 13 years now. When I was little, we traveled a lot to Lebanon and I only wore it when we were there. When we came back to Denmark, my parents didn’t want me to continue wearing it because they didn’t think I was ready for it. Not as a person, but for the reactions I'd might face. They were just trying to protect me. The day my parents finally allowed me to wear it, I remember coming back to school and I was afraid how people would react, but I quickly found out that it was my friends who were more afraid. They needed to know if I had changed because of it, and I needed to tell them why I chose to wear it and show them that I was still the same old me. After that, there wasn’t really anything to talk about and everything was just as normal as it had always been.




Big thanks to my production manager 
Leyla Bautista, journalist, and illustrator for Ethniqa Magazine.

This wouldn't have been possible without your help!


søndag den 22. februar 2015

Just another sunday in Copenhagen... And Michael








Michael is 53 years old, has two little girls, 10 and 12 who lives with their mom. For almost 20 years, he has been a homeless on the streets of Copenhagen.  

He didn't really choose to be in this situation, but as he said: "I only got myself to blame". "I lost my job and started drinking, before I knew it I also took hard drugs". To this day Michael is still an addict, but have kept away from the drugs for some time now, he gets methadone he says. "I try to talk with my daughters everyday, I recently just told them that I am homeless.