Muslim woman are often subjected to stereotypes based on the picture the media has painted about them, according to Northeastern University student, Juri AlSharhan.
This photo series is dedicated to bridge the misunderstanding between muslim women and other women across the globe. It is designed to give them a voice and speak out as to what makes them proud not only as women, but as muslims in an attempt to break stereotypes that are often imposed on them. They were asked to write facts about themselves that they were proud of, and that they believed non muslims would be surprised to learn about.
“There is so much more to know about us than the fact that we are ‘muslims’, or ‘muslim women’,” said AlSarhan.
Juri AlSarhan, a student and Northeastern University says that people are often surprised when they find out she’s a muslim woman pursuing a ‘serious major and degree.’
Noor Mohamed a student at Northeastern University says she is proud to call herself and independent woman, “something many people don’t expect to hear from a muslim woman.” She claims many find it expected that muslim woman are under the care of a man.
“People usually associate muslims as being very serious, and that women have to be super conservative, but I’m like any woman in the world, I like to work out and I enjoy classes like Barre ,” said Mariam Almarzouki.
Zein Saeed got her high school diploma at an International Boarding School. ” Some people would be surprised to know that I went to a boarding school , yes with boys and girls,” said Saeed.
The sign reads ‘ and I speak fluent French.’ “People finding fascinating and interesting that I can speak franch, I am not sure why, but they typically get surprised when my English is perfect so I guess add French and I’m a ‘rare breed,’ ” said Leyla Joukhdar a Suffolk University student.
“I am from Saudi, but my mother has been a lawyer and I am really proud to share that in a country where women are not allowed to drive, but have brains to control your freedom,” said Loulwa Joukhdar.
They expressed annoyance at common questions that they are asked and decided to publicly answer them in order to break the stereotypes imposed on Muslim women.
“People commonly believe that all muslim women are oppressed but thats just a small group of people that are now being used as the examples of all of us muslim women,” said AlSarhan./
“I’m always asked is this haram [taboo], or is this haram and I just want people to know that no, not everything is haram. I get really annoyed when people constantly ask me this,” said Almarzouki.
“People usually think that my father would not want me to work, or that I’ll get my degree and go back to live at home and get married, but that is not the case,” said Saeed.
“When people find out I’m muslim they usually immediately think I’m from Saudi or that I cannot drive or I don’t know how to. But I’m from Kuwait and I very much know how to drive,”said Mohamed.
“People always assume my first language is Arabic just because I’m muslim, but no my first language was French,” said Joukhdar.
“I really don’t like this stereotype, just because I’m Arab then everyone has to assume I’m rich or that I have a trust fund. No, like thats so offensive,” said Joukhdar.
[TO BE CONTINUED/ THIS IS ONLY A DRAFT]