In defense of Hijab: Azizah’s front cover

Posted on August 7, 2007

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Azizah magazine cover

Linda Morris Religious Affairs Writer
Sydney Morning Herald (Australia)
August 7, 2007 Tuesday, p. 5
First Edition
ON JUST about every cover of Azizah, the first of a new crop of US Muslim women’s magazines, is a women wearing the hijab.

The practice has drawn criticism that the publisher and editor of Azizah, Tayyibah Taylor, is perpetuating stereotypes she herself wants eliminated.

But she is unapologetic: she wants the magazine to be instantly recognisable as a Muslim one and sees it as a platform for rehabilitating the hijab, which receives bad press as an object of oppression, as well as redefining Muslim women at a time when many feel unjustly misrepresented.

Azizah, Arabic for “dear” and “strong”, was launched in 2000 and blends profiles of prominent Muslim women with fashion, food, health, travel and spirituality. And it may be coming to Australia, with talks under way for an international edition incorporating an eight or 16-page insert that would feature stories on local Muslim women.

The current issue of the quarterly glossy, with a US circulation of about 40,000, features the world’s first private female space explorer, Anousheh Ansari, her hair discreetly covered by her space suit, as well as articles on Muslim women lawyers, domestic violence (or ways to achieve domestic bliss) and “womb wellness”.

Ms Taylor published the first issue in 2000 to create a place where Muslim women could reach their spiritual and social potential. Shattering stereotypes about Muslim women was a happy by-product. [more]

Azizah Magazine


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