Let’s Talk About “Sunat Perempuan”

By Afiqa Ab Rahman Recently I attended a workshop where participants from Singapore, Malaysia, India, and Thailand shared their experiences and discussed about Female Genital Mutilation (FGM). Variations of the term include Female Genital Cutting (FGC) or “Sunat Perempuan”. It was intriguing to hear the experiences and research findings from various countries. But what intrigued…

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In commemoration of International Day of Zero Tolerance from Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) on 6 February, Beyond the Hijab will be running a 6-part series of blog posts by women living in Singapore about their thoughts and reflections on the practice of female circumcision in Singapore. Let’s Talk about “Sunat Perempuan” Leave Them Alone My Body…

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The Pain of Sex

By anonymous For the past few years, I have struggled with pain associated with vaginal intercourse. I visited doctors but none could provide me with the answers I was looking for. “Have more sex, it’ll open up…it is supposed to hurt…try different angles.” The advice was never helpful and only reinforced my worry that there was something wrong…

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Ask Before Touching

*Content Note: Post discusses rape and marital rape It is common practice to ask before touching something that is not yours. The same rule applies to bodies. A husband does not own his wife or her body and must ask before touching it. She is the sole owner of her body and has the right…

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The Disease of Womanhood.

Exiting the bathroom stall Sweat drips from forehead absorbed by cotton hijab Red drops drip from skin absorbed by cotton pads I lift my jumper and check my butt in the mirror Leggings stained with spots The marker of my womanhood It is here. I scurry outside to the sea of white and blue Clenching…

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Exodus 3:14 or Decolonizing the Multi-Racial Body

By Diana Rahim My body is the world because – You won’t let me be myself. History won’t let me be myself. Cultures won’t let me be myself. My skin holds down blood that does not know which ocean to return to. Creases on my skin demarcate borders between countries. When I shift my bones, continents…

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The Difficulties of Praying in A Mosque for a Muslim Woman

Photo: http://30masjids.ca/night-1-masjid-toronto-at-adelaide/ By Filzah Sumartono Because I’m a Muslim Girl I pray behind a wall I pray behind curtains I pray behind men Because I’m a Muslim Girl I don’t go to the mosque on Fridays I don’t go to the mosque on my period My presence is not necessary So I shall go home.

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The Normalization of Body Damage

In second grade, I joined a co-ed Islamic school. I was happy to be around girls and boys who looked more like me. I was no longer the only Big Bird with awkward lanky bones. I could hide my untamed hair under a white cotton hijab. My chai colored skin was mid range on the…

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Malay Ideas on Women

I recently attended a talk about Malay Ideas on Women. One of the participants raised a particularly interesting point. She mentioned the popularity of Malay novels nowadays and the ideas on Malay women that they promote.    This got me thinking. Malay novels are insanely popular. In the public libraries, you have to place a…

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