#DoNotTouchMyClothes: True Colors of Afghan Women

Published September 15th, 2021 - 08:29 GMT
Afghan women hit back at Taliban with #DoNotTouchMyClothes
Afghan women hit back at Taliban with #DoNotTouchMyClothes (Twitter)
Highlights
My culture, my pride, my dress. Why black dress code?
Any culture or religion that homogenizes expression is a tyrannical one.
The campaign is a response to the Taliban’s new dress code for female students in Afghanistan.

By Ewelina Lepionko

What a strong campaign to show just how colorful Afghan women are. 

Since the return of the Taliban to power in Afghanistan, women have felt particularly felt the brunt of the persecution.

The Taliban have imposed on women the burqa (a full-length black gown covering the body from head to toe) and the niqab (a face veil that covers everything except for the eyes).

Social media is now seeing an online campaign started by Afghan women as they continue to resist the attempts at quashing their right to freedom and expression. 

Afghan women around the world are sharing images of themselves wearing traditional clothing under the hashtag #DoNotTouchMyClothes. 

The campaign has now garnered hundreds of tweets from women residing in Afghanistan and abroad. 

The campaign started by Dr Bahar Jalali, a former history professor at the American University in Afghanistan, has seen hundreds of women posting their photos as well as comments against the Taliban rules.

#DoNotTouchMyClothes on Twitter is being used by Afghan women in an effort to take back their diminishing rights. Primarily, the campaign is to protest the imposition of the Taliban dress code.

"No woman has ever dressed like this in the history of Afghanistan. This is utterly foreign and alien to Afghan culture. I posted my pic in the traditional Afghan dress to inform, educate, and dispel the misinformation that is being propagated by Taliban," Jalali said.

The traditional Afghan clothing for women includes flowing dresses covering the ankles. Women also wear headscarves to cover their head. However, the conservative burqa was imposed by the Taliban in the previous regime and has been brought back again by the new leaders.

Since the Taliban took the capital Kabul, it has set up an all-male interim government. Many Afghan women, especially in urban centers, fear that their hard-gained freedoms might be limited, remembering the 1996 to 2001 Taliban regime.

Ever since the group seized control of Afghanistan, the international community has had concerns about women’s fate in the country.


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