Title

On the edge of solidarity : the burqa and public life

Document Type

Journal article

Source Publication

Society

Publication Date

9-2012

Volume

49

Issue

5

First Page

457

Last Page

467

Keywords

Burqa, Citizenship, Face, Public, Reciprocity, Solidarity, Sympathy

Abstract

Dislike among European publics for the Islamic full veil and the desire to ban it are often ascribed to nativist "Islamophobia." This article questions that assumption. It argues that, in political terms, the wearing of the burqa and niqab is inconsistent with Western norms of equality, the backbone of the citizenship ideal; and that, in social terms, the full veil erects a partition to interpersonal understanding and reciprocity. While the constitutional duty to protect religious freedom is a good argument in favor of tolerating the full veil, the practice of wearing it is at the edge of solidarity and injurious to the democratic public sphere.

DOI

10.1007/s12115-012-9584-2

Print ISSN

01472011

E-ISSN

19364725

Publisher Statement

Copyright © Springer-Verlag

Access to external full text or publisher's version may require subscription.

Full-text Version

Publisher’s Version

Recommended Citation

Baehr, P., & Gordon, D. (2012). On the edge of solidarity: The burqa and public life. Society, 49(5), 457-467. doi: 10.1007/s12115-012-9584-2