The veil of mystery

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The veil of mystery

According to the traditional view an ideal society was one in which women were confined to the home, where they performed the various domestic tasks associate with managing a household and rearing children. Women are considered intruders when they enter to spaces controlled by man, such as the public sphere. Chador permits them to move freely in these spaces as they are considered that time ‘invisible’, demonstrating an appropriate behavior. In order to be respected by men, and protected from them in public a woman should not flout her looks. Of equal importance is the stated Qu’ranic principle, which requires women to dress modestly in public. Nevertheless it is not stated in the Koran that women should wear this black, long cloth, neither they are obliged for their government to do that so.

The answer lays in the culture of Iranian women, the religion and the nature of chador itself. “my mother used to wear chador, my grandmother did the same and so do I”. It is like a custom for us”, Leila explains to me. Iranian women do not question they use of chador since it is something that goes many years before. Iranian women also believe that by wearing chador they serve best the statement of the Koran that the women should be dressed modestly. The most interesting explanation though is that women wear the chador for protection. “The chador is my space, no one can come into my space unless I let them in”, says Roshanak. People cannot obtain information from a women wearing chador, thus they cannot harm her. Moreover chador is a convenient fabric that women can easily put on and perform their daily activities without to be forced to follow the latest trends of fashion.