I haven't had a chance yet to read the post closely, but this reminds me of the times that I've had to (grudgingly, resentfully, unhappily) wear a headscarf. Quite a contrast to the joy and acceptance I felt when I received my garments. (I'm finally a "real" Mormon!)
I've learned to separate out when Muslim women wear a headscarf because they *want* to (as a symbol of their commitment made as
adults) from when they *have* to (my little girl nieces-in-law) because it happens to be a village custom, or out of respect, like
when I've visited mosques in various countries. That's different from wearing a headscarf because it's proscribed by law either de
facto (Saudi Arabia, Iran) or de jure (post-Taliban Afghanistan, Iraq).
Kind of like potential brides deciding whether or not to wear a veil - it's tradition, rarely obligatory, and now far removed from
its original meaning.
So why do I do I feel like flinging off my headscarf whenever I visit my in-laws and yet my g's make me feel cozy and safe, despite
the parallels between the two? Maybe because wearing a headscarf is not my choice, and g's are. Maybe because a headscarf carries all
the weight of oppression and (in)visibility, and g's are personal, intimate, hidden, and a sign of worthiness and protection. Maybe
because the compromises (looking like a Malaysian exchange student, not be able to hear on the phone properly, constant adjusting and
tugging, overheating in the sun) are more irritating for a headscarf than for my g's (purging some too short skirts and shorts).
If, as the post argues, covering up equals autonomy and liberation in religious life, then I'd do it.
Authority on Her Head