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Critical Youth Studies Reader

Preface by Paul Willis

Edited By Awad Ibrahim and Shirley R. Steinberg

This book won the 2014 AESA (American Educational Studies Association) Critics Choice Award.

This reader begins a conversation about the many aspects of critical youth studies. Chapters in this volume consider essential issues such as class, gender, sexuality, race, ethnicity, cultural capital, and schooling in creating a dialogue about and a conversation with youth. In a society that continues to devalue, demonize, and pathologize young women and men, leading names in the academy and youth communities argue that traditional studies of youth do not consider young people themselves. Engaging with today’s young adults in formal and informal pedagogical settings as an act of respect, social justice, and transgression creates a critical pedagogical path in which to establish a meaningful twenty-first century critical youth studies.
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19 From Hijabi to Ho-jabi: Voguing the Hijab and the Politics Behind an Emerging Subculture

← 213 | 214 →CHAPTER 19

Extract

Hijabi and the City

In the closing scenes of Sex and the City 2, the feisty Carrie and her loyal sidekicks take on the exotically portrayed streets of Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates. Their provocative and colourful clothing is starkly contrasted with the long, black cloaks of the Emirati women. As the lead characters make their way through markets and side streets, there is repeated emphasis on their sexual liberation, while the local men and women are depicted as stern and asexual. It is on one of these streets that the women, while making a comedic getaway from an angry mob of men who want to persecute them for being so open about their sexuality, are pulled into a secret tent. Here, a mysterious group of veiled women unveil themselves to reveal what lies beneath their cloaks: the women proudly show off the latest trends and most coveted names off the runway—not so modest and not so monotone. To the surprise of Carrie and her friends, the fashion was so stunning that it not only exceeded their expectations, but it was beyond anything that Sex and the City put on.

Revealing what is worn underneath the veil, it seems, shifts the meaning behind the veil as a sign of the ‘other’ to the more familiar. Clothing here plays a powerful role in how one can use objects to create new meanings. One’s clothes become a tool through which interactions with the world can...

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