Although we think we know all about the headscarf issue, it is the narrative behind it that we do non cognize. The job is that we are, in a manner, alienated from the human narratives underlying it. For a long clip it has merely been the frozen snapshot of a miss, who can non come in the university gates with her headscarf, which comes to mind. However, recent treatments on the civil fundamental law and raising the headscarf prohibition have been traveling on in Turkey and beneath them are the mute, frequently disking, existent life experiences of those who wear the headscarf. The desperation of pupils who can non hold an instruction due to the prohibition, the agonies of those who have gone abroad for instruction are underestimated. Many victims of the headscarf prohibition explosion into cryings when explicating their experiences, victims like Betul Uzer.Betul Uzer, a immature lady who wears a headscarf, has her ain melancholic narrative.
While she was analyzing in her 3rd twelvemonth at the Faculty of Medicine in Konya Selcuk University, Turkey, she found that her outstanding classs were won in vain. Uzer lost one twelvemonth because of punishments and even suspension environing the erosion of a headscarf. Expecting to happen a solution, she did non state her male parent of the state of affairs, but spent another twelvemonth in Konya undertaking the jobs. Finally, she went to Vienna, like many other victims of the prohibition, and attended a annual linguistic communication class learning German. Uzer was accepted at the University of Vienna Medical School in the undermentioned twelvemonth, but her male parent, enduring from malignant neoplastic disease, died during her clip off. The sorrow she experienced made every individual twenty-four hours of her six-year instruction really acrimonious.
She was finally awarded her sheepskin in Vienna and is seeking to have accreditation for her sheepskin now, but she can non bury her male parent. “ What my pa wanted more than everything was to see my sheepskin, ” she says. Nevertheless, she still wonders how the people who blocked her academic surveies can kip at dark, what they think about before they put their caputs onto the pillow. Can they truly acquire to kip?
Divorce from a Spouse Wearing a Headscarf
Yildiz Tekin ‘s is another sad narrative. When she was a kid, her widowed female parent paid for her educational disbursals by cleaning houses. Tekin became a instructor and was appointed to Malatya, an Eastern Anatolian metropolis where she decided to have on a headscarf. She liked learning and kids really much and besides liked to learn their female parents run uping, reading and composing.
But new ordinances meant she was non allowed to come in the school or when she was allowed, she was told to wait in empty suites. Her boy, who was a pupil at the school, was besides excluded by the other instructors, who decribed him as the ‘bigot ‘s boy ‘ . Tekin was prohibited from go oning with her business and an enquiry into her hubby, who was Vice-Principal, was started. He was sent to Eastern Anatolian metropolis of Hakkari following the enquiry and became down. He blamed Yildiz for the state of affairs: “ You are responsible for everything. You are guilty, your headscarf is guilty. ” In the terminal, they divorced and she became unemployed after 15 old ages of instruction.
She was paid nil and had her rights ‘ taken off by the authorities. Tekin, nevertheless, had a boy and hence had to last. She opened a portable stationary shop near the school, trusting to see her pupils once more, but she had to shut it because of reactions of the school principal and some of his instructors.With her university pupil boy, Yildiz Tekin, she is now seeking to last ‘hand to talk ‘ in a rented house. “ It does non hold to be like this, ” she says. She has nil to make except respond against those who have caused her hurting.
The headscarf prohibition does non merely affect ‘university pupils ‘ . Womans, raised in hapless households like Tekin where the headscarf is customary, love their occupations, bu suffer because of the prohibition. Tekin ‘ narrative is non the lone illustration. Despite the block on send oning their instruction and working life, adult females have oning the headscarf live their lives in the hope that one twenty-four hours there will be a positive betterment.These adult females ‘s lives have to be considered in the visible radiation of the fiscal adversity and depression caused by exclusion and the sense of waste derived from being inactive during their most productive old ages. The grim influence of category difference and variable income distribution causes unfairness for a whole group of traditional adult females.
I think the widespread construct of the “ adult female in headscarf-traditional homemaker theoretical account ” does non assist the cause of adult females who can non hold an instruction or happen a proper occupation because of have oning the headscarf. Those few adult females who manage to carve out an educational life and acquire a occupation, normally become unemployed because of their headscarves and experience ‘useless ‘ , ‘worthless. ‘In 1987 Ayse Akbal, who was a pupil in the Faculty of Dentistry in Istanbul University, was non allowed back to her module after the half-term interruption and now she has experienced the same job after 23 old ages because of her girl.
“ Many things have changed during the past 23 old ages in Turkey, many things have improved. Merely the prohibition, which has profoundly influenced our lives, has non changed, ” she says. “ 23 old ages, ” repeats her girl Nuseybe in unhappiness and timidness. For 19-year-old Nuseybe, 23 old ages is a truly a long clip.
Ayse Akbal`s interior universe is calmed by a past informant that still made her trust her state. This memory makes her eyes glistening and makes her proud instead than composure. “ During the first yearss of the headscarf prohibition, the university disposal came to do an review in the center of our category hr.
They wanted all the pupils to subscribe a testimony which said that they had witnessed two pupils have oning headscarf. None of the 150 pupils signed the paper. My friends ‘ action made me to look at the hereafter with hope. I`m still hopeful, ” she explains.
Some of the headscarf victims were, like Ayse Akbal, granted `a friendly hand` at the right clip, but many found themselves in a alone existence in which they were hemmed in. In effect, they felt themselves alienated from the province that implemented the prohibitions and the society composed of `unfriendly hands` . Furthermore, their sense of belonging was harmed and their apprehension of `freedom` became exalted over other values in their lives.
Prohibition has simply increased the figure of `new generation` adult females with headscarves, who have daring thoughts on many issues. Their faces are now turned towards the Western universe, which is considered the cradle of freedom. This coevals is seeking to open infinite for itself among adult females with headscarves, which does non barricade them. These are new-age adult females with headscarves who interpret underdevelopment of Muslim states from a Western ; erspec tive because their mentions on issues of human rights and freedom are Western states like the United States, UK and Netherlands where there is no headscarf prohibition.
The narrative of Halime Arslan reveals how the headscarf prohibition is regulated randomly and causes much psychological wear and tare. Arslan entered Cerrahpasa Faculty of Medicine in 1995. She and her friends, who used to have on headscarves, encountered a series of jobs during their 3rd twelvemonth in the module. They were non allowed to take their mid-term tests because the surgical secretariat had demanded a list of the pupils with headscarves from the pupil personal businesss office and `deleted` their names from the exam entry list. Although it was unsure whether Arslan and her friends would come to the module in their headscarves, they were obstructed by a preemptive step. Their entreaty was rejected by the tribunal in a printed finding of fact and the measure of equity was non re-examined. “ I was left on the other side of the Gatess of an test I studied so difficult for, ” she says.
“ Friends with whom I thought I had a good relationship entered the category with my talk notes in their custodies. None turned her/his caput towards me, none looked at me. This made me upset for a really long clip. ”It was non merely her name, but her being every bit good that was deleted from the module. She faced many disconcerting incidents such as being insulted in forepart of patients and often holding to run into police officers during the undermentioned yearss. She was thrown out of categories, non allowed into the categories and subjected to the `revenge` type sentences from `former leftist` faculty members, who made remarks like: “ You did non let us into category in the yesteryear, either.
” She ne’er understood who `you` and `us` were. Finally, she was expelled from the module due to her subject punishments and non-attendance.Arslan, on the other manus, opened her eyes to a wholly different universe in the Vienna School of Medicine. On the twenty-four hours of enrollment she was struck by people doing `eye contact` with her and by their `friendliness` . She sat and cried because she had experienced this pleasance non in her place state, but in a foreign state where another faith was practiced. However, she ever felt that God`s clemency was upon her.Having completed their instruction abroad, many, merely like Halime Arslan, attempt to derive `accreditation` for their sheepskin in Turkey, but have to wait a long clip. Others, who are even less lucky, dream about the yearss when they will be treated `equally` in their ain state, when all citizens are `equal` under the fundamental law.
The most dramatic look of the headscarf prohibition is surely found on university campuses, as it is said that instruction is the beginning of everything in society. Yet a `right to education` is guaranteed by the fundamental law. This is the world where people complain about misss non holding sufficient instruction on the one manus and so defy `educating women` who wear headscarves on the other manus. Such a contradiction is non even experienced in 3rd universe states.
Imprisoning a sister who telegraphed on behalf of her younger sister`s right of instruction is found nowhere else…However, the look of expostulation to the headscarf prohibition should non be limited to the universities. The whole of the populace sector might go an country where the headscarf is seen as a offense against secularism. Some recent incidents prove that `turban descriptions` deducing from the impression of `public sphere` have been invented to confound the head and do room for any sort of flightiness. Because the extent of the application of the prohibition is so equivocal, it becomes inevitable that it will turn into a de facto standard and be extended to a`family life` composed of married womans and sisters. Even the private sector might implement and work the prohibition.
The prohibition should be lifted from both the educational field and the public services without doing any differentiation of service supplier and service receiver. Otherwise, the headscarf prohibition will travel on cleaving to our lives in driving direction, private linguistic communication classs, conferences held for asthmatics and even in the libraries. It will supply grounds for the `private sphere` and be abused at that place.
Elif Gul besides went abroad because of the headscarf prohibition. When she returned, the issue was still unresolved and so she is still unemployed. She spends her clip reading, watching films and sometimes doing interlingual renditions. Elif, who is 25 old ages old, is rather repetitive that Turkey should non undervalue the grounds for her non being entirely supportive of her ain state. She strongly objects to the reviews of the Western broad democracies.
“ The West knows about sharing, about confession. The West is working ; it is tolerant. The West is seeking to make what is right, but our state of affairs is different, ” she says.It would be really naif to anticipate that those immature misss, whose cardinal rights are taken off, would non be influenced by the societal clime in states that do non judge them every bit much as Turkey does. Their amazement turned to esteem in those states. Although they are few in figure, these post-liberal Western adult females with headscarves represent a important, dry paradox.
As a Consequence…
Discrimination implemented towards adult females in headscarves today is against the rule of `equality` which is claimed to be guaranteed by the fundamental law. The headscarf is non a symbol of `the defense mechanism of women`s honor by masculine jealousy` .
On the contrary, it is the most important and critical histrion of a major democratic battle and demand for freedom of belief. Those claiming that the `headscarf is an issue for merely 1.5 per centum of the society` should reconsider whether they themselves have any jobs with single rights and autonomies.
Contending against the prohibitions is a mark of earnestness and will in the demand for regard for spiritual rights. Turkey will either go through this trial or will stay outside the door of consciousness in respect to her history, as did the misss outside the Gatess of university campuses. I hope Turkey will go through the trial.
( 2150 )