for what is honor

God forbid. god forbid. god forbid. Gender division has nothing to do with god. It is a human construction. A devised, contrived, set of human boundaries that has promoted untold suffering, degrading both victim and victimizer. Boundaries based on sex is a total fraud. These social divisions and the mechanisms used to reinforce them end up creating archetypes which conform to stereotypes. Self fulfilling predictions based on the most primitive sense of property and possession.

In cultures where feudalist mentality is the norm, a women migrating from her set role, and having pre-marital sex, have quickly found that death is considered reasonable, logical and rational often by her family. This type of socially embedded and systematic assault on the female gender is becoming more publicized with immigration to the West, at the same time casting a shadow on our own structural sexism based on capitalism, democracy, and some of the same invidious comparisons. Still, the often easy resort to cultural relativism with religio/ideological support is insidious in the most absolute terms and poses serious questions about immigration and the feasibility of even partial acculturation.  The killing of women to preserve  family “honor”, is one of the most blood-boiling examples.

---Showing at New York galleries before female artists were yet to be embraced, her signature urethane Ooze was, as Donald Kuspit notes in the book's essay, "an inspired example of woman's artistically radical as the Women's Movement was socially radical." And when she proclaimed the Art world narrow and elitist, she took her work to the streets, creating site-specific installations and three-dimensional "Framing" performances that spoke directly to the public en masse. Marjorie has even been credited with coining the term Performance art" as it is used today.--- Read More:

In societis where honour killing/murder  is acceptable or even compulsory,  it probably does makes sense in a twisted way as a meaningful practice inculcated into a whole sphere of national institutions regulating sexuality. In much the same way as a Heidegger can write a million words that in the last paragraph justify death camps. Or Americans with slavery. Unfortunately, it can be assumed  that most of the folks who kill their female family members who have someone do it for them,  are not perturbed of it as a criminal act, or even as a social crime; they did the right thing within the context they acted, just another pit of bones within the normative social order.

Christie Blatchford:The 59-year-old Afghan patriarch accused of murder in the deaths of almost half his family finished testifying in his own defence Friday. But while Mr. Shafia continued to deny killing his three daughters and barren first wife, he was nonetheless painted into numerous corners by assistant Crown attorney Laurie Lacelle, who used Mr. Shafia’s own words as her chief weapon. He, his 41-year-old second wife Tooba Mohammad Yahya, and their eldest son Hamed, now 20, are all pleading not guilty to four counts of first-degree murder in the deaths of the four….

Sebatien Vrancx. The Blind Leading the Blind. Hitchens:Here is a society where rape is not a crime. It is a punishment. Women can be sentenced to be raped, by tribal and religious kangaroo courts, if even a rumor of their immodesty brings shame on their menfolk. In such an obscenely distorted context, the counterpart term to shame—which is the noble word “honor”—becomes most commonly associated with the word “killing.” Moral courage consists of the willingness to butcher your own daughter. Read More: image:

The bodies of the couple’s three daughters — Zainab, Sahar and Geeti, then respectively 19, 17 and 13 — and Mr. Shafia’s unacknowledged first wife, Rona Amir Mohammad, 52, were found in a submerged black Nissan at the Kingston Mills locks on June 30, 2009, just two years after they immigrated to Canada and settled in Montreal…

Basically, everywhere, particularly the West- which can better hide it or exploit it because of its relative wealth- women’s second class status is essential in keeping the social stratified structure of the ruling sector, basically male, in maintaining the family and other institutions. Significantly, similar processes function in countries of the world where control of women’s behavior, dress, and representation in  public space have been made examples of orthodoxies in confrontation with modernism, and the forces of  secular society. However, even  in the more progressive societies, women’s control over their bodies,  and their ability to create their future, question identity, is precarious and a work in progress when faced with rubbing on the frontier of male power. No, the division is not biological. Instead, social and cultural forces exercise an undue influence on the mental process by which division is achieved and reinforced: basically persuasion through the advertising/entertainment complex and other embedded cultural mechanisms intrinsic to economics.

Marjorie Strider

ad More:

…A key admission came when Ms. Lacelle, using Mr. Shafia’s conversations on Kingston Police wiretaps, quoted him telling Hamed on the day of their arrest that July that “We haven’t done anything wrong. They [the dead women] did it themselves.”

“Indeed,” Mr. Shafia replied.

“You believe their actions brought about their rightful deaths?” Ms. Lacelle asked.

Pieter Van Der Heyden. ---The Koran commands men to beat women who are disobedient. Sura 4:34 of the Koran says, “Men are the managers of the affairs of women . . . Those women who are rebellious — admonish them, banish them to their couches, and beat them.” In Tirmzi P439 we find: If a woman's conduct is mischievous or immodest, the husband has the right to beat her up (Tirmzi P439) These religious commands of Islam help us understand why Mohamed Kamal Mustafa, A prominent Muslim preacher from Italy authored a book Women in Islam, in which he wrote that verbal warnings followed by a period of sexual inactivity can be used to discipline a disobedient wife. If that failed he said that according to Islamic law, beatings could be then judiciously administered. "The blows should be concentrated on the hands and feet using a rod that is thin and light so that it does not leave scars or bruises on the body." Read More:

“Yes,” Mr. Shafia said.

He went on to say that the girls’ lies to him and secrets kept from him — the eldest had run away from home and Sahar had a boyfriend — amounted to a betrayal.

“You believed your daughters deserved to die for their treachery?” Ms. Lacelle asked.

“That’s up to God,” Mr. Shafia snapped. “What they did, for us [the family] they were not deserving.”

“Their treachery brought dishonour to you and your family?” she persisted.

“We believe in that,” Mr. Shafia agreed.

---The artist sees the people not in God's image but as imperfect beings, the dust of the ground from which they were created characterizing them more than the divine breath which was breathed into it. Bruegel is demonstrating even more clearly than usual that the difference between man and animal is by no means as great as one might think. In taking the cripples' legs, he has stripped them of their means of walking upright. This has nothing to do with resignation; indeed, it seems more of a matter-of-fact observation. Nor is there any sense of sympathy; evidently this was relatively uncommon in the 16th century, there being simply too many beggars in the streets and in front of the churches. And anyway, Bruegel's concern was not so much with the beggars as such, of course, as with beggars as representatives, whether of social groups or of a specific conception of man.--- Read More:

Again throwing his words back at him, Ms. Lacelle asked, “You had a choice — to accept what they did, or kill them?”


Zainab, the oldest Shafia sister

“Not,” said Mr. Shafia.

“And you chose to kill them?”

“I never do some things to my children,” he said, “and I love them more than my own body.”…

The “woman issue” , which sounds a bit like the Jewish question, is basic to the notion of injustice. The degrading and division of women is a significant mechanism in reinforcing male bonding and untangling identity issues, as Bell Hooks in Outlaw Culture perceptively conveyed. It also protects institutions that favor misogyny providing the fodder that helps society as we know it function, albeit at a repressive and violent level needed to maintain the status-quo. Misogyny and sexism is an industry.

---In dealing with women’s issues, especially those of the female body and its sexuality, Bourgeois fit into the feminist rhetoric. When feminist art critic and writer Lucy Lippard enumerated the standards by which to assess “women’s art” in 1973, Bourgeois’s art met nearly all of Lippard’s stipulations: a uniform density, or overall texture, often sensuously tactile and repetitive or detailed to the point of obsession; the preponderance of circular forms, central focus, inner space (sometimes contradicting the first aspect); a ubiquitous linear ‘bag’ or parabolic form that turns in on itself ; layers, strata, or veils, and indefinable looseness of handling; windows; autobiographical content; animals; flowers; a certain kind of fragmentation; a new fondness for the pinks and pastels and ephemeral cloud colors (Lippard).--- Read More: image:

At another point, after Ms. Lacelle again accused Mr. Shafia of killing the four, he said, “Dear respected lady, we never give ourselves the permission to do that. Our Koran does not allow ourselves to do that…

“How could someone do that?” he asked.

“You might do it if you thought they were whores,” the prosecutor smoothly replied, a reference to Mr. Shafia’s repeated cursing of his dead daughters as “filth” and “whores” on the wiretaps.

“Respected lady,” he said, “that was only Zainab, and Sahar, that later I learned. The others were innocents. It’s impossible.”…

John Singer Sargent.---In self-defense, Fateh pulled a knife and stabbed one of the assailants in the arm. The Iranian teenagers then tried to flee when Fateh stabbed another would-be rapist in the chest, killing the repulsive jackal. The young Iranian woman, it was reported, then waited for the police and gave them the knife. But despite her honesty and rightful claim to have acted in self-defense to protect both her and her niece’s honor, a criminal court in the Islamic theocracy sentenced her to death in January, 2006… Ironically, even if Fateh had allowed herself to be raped, the legal result would probably have been the same. In order to understand the logic of killing a daughter for being raped we need to understand that according to Islamic law intercourse outside of marriage is a crime, Period. Serge Trifkovic in his outstanding book, The Sword of the Prophet wrote that according to the New York Times (May 17, 2002) a judge in Pakistan sentenced a young woman to death for "adultery" by stoning because she had been raped by her husband's brother. The judge defended his action by saying that he had merely followed the Kuran based law that mandated this punishment. The fact the woman, Zafran Bibi, was raped was of no consequence...Read More:

…As his words on the wiretaps had revealed him as an unforgiving man, so did his words in testimony show him as a ruthless father who at the least was gloating at the fate meted out to his disobedient family.

In another skillful exchange, Ms. Lacelle took Mr. Shafia through the chats he, Ms. Yahya and Hamed had in their minivan the day police took them to the “accident scene” just outside this eastern Ontario city.

Though the trio clearly believed they were speaking privately, detectives had planted a bug in the van, and then pretended to have spotted a small camera at the water’s edge — it was a ruse — where the Nissan had gone into the canal….

So, women are designated as standard bearers of honor in many societies with so-called virtue being a male possession, a status and distinction marker with male grouping and their sense of territory and perimeter. Simple. danger, risk and purity. A women’s  conformity, obeyance to these male created norms is as an allegory of the dignity of a given group; with a gross double standard whereby males can participate in deviant activities while the female must maintain purity and are closely scrutinized. The holy trinity of regulate, separate and cover. It serves to masculinize public life and society at large, where the virile male is the default position for collective representation, but the religio-nationalist view is also highly secularized as well meaning the secular in many respects and the religious are trying to enact the same results, simply the means vary widely…

…First, the prosecutor got Mr. Shafia to agree that he and Ms. Yahya were at that moment grieving parents, Hamed a grieving brother.

“You must have been relieved to hear police had located a camera?” she asked….

--- A ragged figure in a glass globe is cutting the purse strings of an old man wearing a dark habit. Under the picture are the words: "Since the world is so unfaithful, I am in mourning." The question remains open whether it is the world which is deceiving the old man or vice versa. A shepherd is watching over his flock in the background; he is not complaining but is content to accept his fate, as the Stoics recommend.--- Read More:

“Yes,” said Mr. Shafia. “I got relaxed.”

“You wanted them to get as much evidence as possible?” Ms. Lacelle asked.

“Yes,” he replied.

“So why do your private conversations that day show you were anything but happy?” she asked cheerfully.

Mr. Shafia asked for the question to be repeated by the Farsi translators.

“The conversations do not show you were happy police had found a camera,” Ms. Lacelle said.

“I was happy at everything they found,” Mr. Shafia insisted.

In fact, the wiretaps show the trio were in full panic ­— and markedly lacking in anything remotely resembling grief.

Ms. Yahya at one point said, “There was no camera over there. I looked around, there wasn’t any. If, God forbid, God forbid, there was one in that little house, all three of us would have come, no?” And Mr. Shafia reassured her by saying, “That night, there was no electricity there, everywhere was pitch darkness, you remember, Tooba?”

Mr. Shafia agreed the conversation had happened, but insisted that “I said it would be good.”

He said nothing of the sort, as Ms. Lacelle pointed out to him.

“Hamed says, ‘They said they want to see if the camera has recorded anything or not. They said there’s a camera near the water.’ You say, ‘They’re lying. If there was a camera, they’d access it in a minute.’…

…“That’s an expression of happiness that they found a camera?” Ms. Lacelle asked mildly.

“This is what I meant,” Mr. Shafia said. “It would be good.”

It was a remarkably deft cross-examination of a witness alternately condescending and sly, who hid behind the complications of language and translation, and who could — and did — make himself weep.

When, for instance, Ms. Lacelle was reading his own words, post-arrest, back to him — he was then hectoring a worried Hamed about the importance of “honour” — Mr. Shafia agreed that he linked his honour with his daughters’ rebellious behaviour.

“I said that, yes,” he said, then launched into one of his not infrequent soliloquies.

During it, he said that while “my honour is important to me, to kill someone, you can’t regain your reputation and honour [that way]. Dear lady, you should know that …” and then added, “I would never even think this way, to go and kill my children. I’m a Muslim, yes, but I’m not a killer and I don’t kill.”

He was crying when he finished. It is too much to expect he was aware of the score — dear respected lady 1, Afghan man, 0…. Read More:


Allah’s Apostle said, “If a husband calls his wife to his bed (i.e. to have sexual relation) and she refuses and causes him to sleep in anger, the angels will curse her till morning.” Bukhari 4.54.450

It is hilarious to think that the angels have nothing better to do than sit around and curse the poor woman all the night for depriving them from watching the live porno show. If Allah must punish woman for not satisfying the sexual needs of their husbands why does he needs angels to lobby him for it? Isn’t it a waste of angel’s resources?

In one sense this is all truly very funny. But in another, much larger sense, it is a tragedy…

I think it is worth mentioning that in Saudi Arabia if a person has been killed or caused to die by another, the latter has to pay blood money or compensation, as follows:

100,000 riyals if the victim is a Muslim man

50,000 riyals if a Muslim woman

50,000 riyals if a Christian man

25,000 riyals if a Christian woman

6,666 riyals if a Hindu man

3,333 riyals if a Hindu woman

Source: The Wall Street Journal, April 9, 2002

So as you see people’s worth are not the same in Islam. It depends on their gender and their religion. Read More:

Read More:

Related Posts

This entry was posted in Art History/Antiquity/Anthropology, Feature Article, Ideas/Opinion, Modern Arts/Craft and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>