Stealthy Freedom of Iranian Women: Headscarves Shed in Facebook Photos

Tuesday, 13 May 2014 05:14 PM

By Morgan Chilson

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Many Iranian women are baring their heads, defying their country's laws, and posting photos of themselves on the "Stealthy Freedoms of Iranian Women" Facebook page.

According to The Huffington Post, the page was begun by Iranian journalist Masih Alinejad, who posted a photo of herself on Facebook in 2009 driving without a hijab, or headscarf. Doing so made her wonder if other Iranian women sometimes took their head coverings off in public.

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Many women have shown they do indeed slip outside with bare heads.

“I just want to have the right to CHOOSE! Maybe I would have even chosen to wear a scarf if I’d had options to choose from,” said one comment, translated by The Huffington Post. “But it hurts me so much when others make decisions for ME instead of myself.”

The Stealthy Freedoms of Iranian Women Facebook page was created about a week ago and already has more than 162,000 likes.

Although many of the women posting photos object to the hijab, it remains a controversial topic in Iran. The BBC reported that a demonstration recently in Tehran involved protesters who wanted the laws requiring women to cover up in public to be enforced more strictly.

Although Iran’s new president Hassan Rouhani has said he believes the police shouldn’t be enforcing the hijab laws and that women should be guided in their dress through education, police still continue to pull women off the streets if they’re not properly garbed, The New York Times reported in March. In that story, photographer Hossein Fatimeh took photos of Iranian women obscured through veils.

On the Stealthy Freedoms page, photos continue to be posted, and women continue to seek a different way of doing things.

“Stealthy freedom means, just for a few seconds, I will be what I want to be," one wrote, as translated by the BBC.

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