Tuesday, November 30, 2004

A Society Imprisoned

Athena has some chilling details about the casual attitude toward honor killings in her latest post from Jordan:

Sally and Malik haven’t been dating for very long and I won’t go into the details of their relationship, but she really did like this guy, and I liked him as well. He seemed very Western, spoke English well, acted respectably, dressed nice, came from an affluent and well-off family. He even lived in Europe for two years and had relationships with girls there.
They went out to eat last night and she brought up the subject of honor killings. Malik nonchalantly said that he would be willing to kill his sister or support his uncle or dad if they killed her if she had sex.
This really upset Sally. They were holding hands and she immediately jerked away. He looked at her quizzically and asked what was wrong. She said she couldn’t be touched by someone whose hands would kill his own sister for doing things that this guy enjoys fairly often with females.
Malik just didn’t get it. He said it was just his culture. Sally said that she can’t be around someone who would kill his own sister, and she asked him what he thought of her, did he even view her as human or was she just some object since she was an American girl?
Malik couldn’t explain himself, indeed it’s a position that cannot be rectified.
These people think they are so free here, but they’re shackled in their own chains. They try to be so Western, so modern, so rich but they are wallowing in their own backwardness.

Athena sounds unnerved (as well she should be) by coming up close and personal with this casual attitude toward the murder of women to restore "honor" (I should mention that "Sally" is her roommate in Jordan). She is beginning to see the entire society she is studying as "imprisoned". The women are literally and figuratively imprisoned behind the veil; and the men are equally incarcerated by their unquestioning acceptance of this cultural insanity.

Be safe, Athena.

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