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  • Everything is a social construct, including gender and the ways in which we observe, perceive, and exhibit it. Every perpetuation of these societal conventions is a willful decision on our part, from the way we speak (women are apologetic and hesitant, men are matter-of-fact and declarative) to the way we publicly present ourselves. Every time we decide to abide by these socially-constructed norms, what are we saying to ourselves, to the world? Who would we be if centuries of the intrinsic, almost universal patriarchal biases of the human race were stripped away?
  • I will never play up to a man's desires unless he is a loved one who gives me the equivalent regard, nor will I ever strive to be attractive or impressive to male sensibilities. If I do anything to improve myself in any sense, it will always be for me and God alone. I am beautiful only for myself, and my identity as a Muslim woman helps me internalize this mantra.
  • There is never any need to be meek or vacillating, nor is there any need to be aggressive and overcompensating. Desires to unquestionably agree with the other sex or to overpower and defy it both stem from illusions of weakness. In the eyes of God, all acts are judged equally, regardless of gender. There is no need to apologize for being a timid woman, or to apologize for being an outspoken one. What we must be mindful of is the origin of our inorganic character traits. We must question that within ourselves which exists because society willed it to be so. Do I ever push myself to be loud because I've been told that silence is weakness? Do I force myself to apologize and nurture when what I should be doing is questioning and challenging?
  • In a world of 7 billion, how much damage are we doing to the collective human potential by marginalizing the active participation of a full 50% of the earth's inhabitants?
  • I must be interested in the struggles of all women and all human beings, not just those I feel personally connected to. INTERSECTIONALITY is the key to a healthy, just human community; no meaningful progress will ever be made without it.
  • I should strive to make life better for a multitude of people, not merely those who would reward me with companionship or love.
  • My worth should not be derived from having succeeded in love or friendship.
  • My congruence with society is a negligible detail and should never be the basis of my self-worth. What is most modern, most progressive, or most 'Western' is not necessarily what is most correct or beneficial. Maintaining the ability to objectively discern in this regard is vitally important. I must always ensure that my perspectives are as unbiased and decolonized as possible.

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oct 16 2010 ∞
feb 20 2017 +