To wear or not to wear?
For just being a piece of cloth, the tudung (or hijab as most non-Malay speakers call it) sparks so much controversy and dialogue, and even obsessive control. It can give way to so much debate about oppression vs freedom, Islamophobia vs fundamentalism, Westernization vs Arabization, and many more. There is also a debate within the Muslim community themselves, which ranges from whether or not the hijab is an absolute obligation to how much should a Muslim woman cover themselves, when various cultures have so many different ways to cover their aurah?
Published by Matahari Books, The Tudung Anthology seeks to shed light on this issue, and brings together 22 female writers to write about their experience with the tudung. What results is a unique and eclectic collection of distinct voices who speaks their truth on their decision to wear or not to wear a tudung. Unlike most books and articles about the tudung that that leans on either side of the extreme, The Tudung Anthology contains a fair and balanced view of the tudung and written with refreshing honesty.
The writing ranges from those who are strongly against tudung, strongly supporting tudung, not wearing but support those who are wearing, wearing but support those who do not, forced to wear it and choose to wear it. The genre of writing also reflects the mixed opinion on the topic; there are personal essays, speculative short stories, poems and even a 2-page comic. The only consistent thing about the anthology is that the writers are all women, and in the world where men tries to dominate every aspect of women’s life, it’s a relief to hear women’s voices loud and clear in anthology that deals specifically with women’s issue.
With its refreshing content and lovingly edited, The Tudung Anthology is a must for those who are curious about the politics of this piece of cloth that is capable of sparking a revolution and the women who live under its protection and shadow.
– Review by Huda
Get the book here