Lubna al-Hussein – Legend
Posted by Leah on April 9, 2010
I’ve been meaning to write about this woman for ages so, despite my timing being a wee bit on the lagging side, here goes!
Lubna al-Hussein, a Sudanese journalist, was arrested along with 12 other women in July 2009 for wearing ‘indecent clothing’ – read, trousers – in a Khartoum restaurant. This ‘crime’ can be punished by up to 40 lashes, and 10 of Lubna’s co-accused received 10 each.
Lubna was ordered to pay a fine – which she refused to pay on the grounds that doing so would legitimise the charge. Instead she was sentenced to jail for a month; however she was released after only one night when supporters paid the fine without her permission. Lubna wanted to make a clear point about this discriminatory, oppressive law, and resigned from her position with the UN because it would have granted her immunity to the charge.
Before the trial she even sent out invitations reading, ‘Sudanese journalist Lubna invites you again to her flogging tomorrow.’
What a legend.
On another note, a belated shout out to the group of 34 imams and scholars in Mauritania who in January this year declared a fatwa against female genital mutilation. I’m not usually a fan of fatwas, but this one seems ok!
And to finish, a nice quote from the suffragette Rebecca West all the back in 1913, ‘I myself have never been able to find out precisely what a feminist is, I only know that people call me a feminist whenever I express sentiments that differentiate me from a doormat.’