January 8, 2014

How people in Muslim countries prefer women to dress in public


UPDATE: Read our Q&A with the author of the Univ. of Michigan study for more information on survey methods and to see how responses differed by gender, age, education and religion.

An important issue in the Muslim world is how women should dress in public. A recent survey from the University of Michigan’s Institute for Social Research conducted in seven Muslim-majority countries (Tunisia, Egypt, Iraq, Lebanon, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia and Turkey), finds that most people prefer that a woman completely cover her hair, but not necessarily her face. Only in Turkey and Lebanon do more than one-in-four think it is appropriate for a woman to not cover her head at all in public.

The survey treated the question of women’s dress as a visual preference. Each respondent was given a card depicting six styles of women’s headdress and asked to choose the woman most appropriately outfitted for a public place. Although no labels were included on the card, the styles ranged from a fully-hooded burqa (woman #1) and niqab (#2) to the less conservative hijab (women #4 and #5). There was also the option of a woman wearing no head covering of any type.

Overall, most respondents say woman #4, whose hair and ears are completely covered by a white hijab, is the most appropriately dressed for public. This includes 57% in Tunisia, 52% in Egypt, 46% in Turkey and 44% in Iraq. In Iraq and Egypt, woman #3, whose hair and ears are covered by a more conservative black hijab, is the second most popular choice.

In Pakistan, there is an even split (31% vs. 32%) between woman #3 and woman #2, who is wearing a niqab that exposes only her eyes, while nearly a quarter (24%) choose woman #4. In Saudi Arabia, a 63%-majority prefer woman #2, while an additional 11% say that the burqa worn by woman #1 is the most appropriate style of public dress for women.

In several countries, substantial minorities say it is acceptable for a woman to not cover her hair in public. Roughly a third (32%) of Turks take this view, as do 15% of Tunisians. Nearly half (49%) in Lebanon also agree that it is acceptable for a woman to appear in public without a head covering, although this may partly reflect the fact that the sample in Lebanon was 27% Christian. Demographic information, including results by gender, were not included in the public release of this survey.

FT_clothing1314Even as publics in many of the surveyed countries express a clear preference for women to dress conservatively, many also say women should be able to decide for themselves what to wear. This attitude is most prevalent in Tunisia (56%), Turkey (52%) and Lebanon (49%) – all countries where substantial percentages are open to women not covering their heads in public. But nearly as many in Saudi Arabia (47%) also say a women should be free to choose how she dresses. Smaller, but sizable percentages agree in Iraq (27%), Pakistan (22%) and Egypt (14%). What the survey leaves unanswered is whether respondents think social or cultural norms will guide women in their choice to wear more conservative or less conservative attire in public.

Topics: Gender, Religion and Society

  1. Photo of Jacob Poushter

    is a senior researcher focusing on global attitudes at Pew Research Center.


  1. Anonymous1 year ago

    I am a Muslim teenager and none of my family members ever said me to cover my body parts. My parents allow me to wear whatever I want. I can wear shorts, crop-tops and even a bikini.

  2. Adiba Khan2 years ago

    Yes, Islamic do require covering your whole body including the head and face, but most of the western countries not avoid covering their faces. And it’s fine I guess. Even the clothes offered by online Islamic stores like eastessence.com offer their most of the clothes that doesn’t include a face veil.

    1. Anonymous1 year ago

      The covering of the face is cultural not Islamic

  3. Haywood Jublowmi2 years ago

    So when did God speak to you and tell you to dress like a minion? This is not about God, it is about intelligence. How many would choose to dress that way of their own free will? Err, no one, ever. So, it is not a choice. And that sucks.

    1. Bgal Swiftie2 years ago

      “How many would choose to dress that way of their own free will? Err, no one, ever”.


      There are so many Muslim women out there who decided to wear it on their own decision.

      Not all Muslim women were forced to wear the hijab. A lot of them don’t even wear it. In countries like Malaysia, Egypt, Indonesia and Turkey, women can choose whether they wanted to wear it or not.

      Please at least use your best logic before you even dare posting an ignorant statement like this.

      1. Anonymous1 year ago

        In a way it is true that they are forced to wear it in countries you mentioned. It all depends one how religious your family is.

      2. Anonymous1 year ago

        In a way it is not a choice, it all depends how religious of a family you are raised in…

    2. Anonymous1 year ago

      Many chose to wear this.

    3. Washan Jamal1 year ago

      I’m a Muslim girl, 23, my family has NEVER EVER told me I had to cover up my hair or my arms or anything, I also have two younger sisters and neither of us have been forced to wear anything such as a headscarf of cover up, we wear shorts, tanks, bathing suits, etc we dress like any other american family with girls would. we still believe in God and we are Muslims BUT we don’t think that covering ourselves makes us any better or brings us any closer to God. People are able to dress modestly without having to cover head to toe. DONE get the Arab culture mixed into the Islamic religion… I’m not arab. I’m Kurdish and Kurds are always a little more open minded and more “westernized” than Arabs are..

      My mom prays and etc. we aren’t very religious but that doesn’t make us any different. we choose to NOT cover up.. the problem with Islam today and how the rest of the world views Islam and Muslims is that the arab culture has been mixed into Islam and they have twisted peoples views on Islam.

  4. victoriaamarga2 years ago

    I was raised in a catholic home. However, now that I am old, I have to accept that there is no evidence of the existence of any Christian God…
    There is not any evidence of the existence any Yhavé, god of the jews.
    There is not any evidence of the existence of those hundreds of Indian Gods and Goddesses
    Nor evidence of existence of any Ala
    Indeed, there is actual historic evidence of the existence of important persons like Jesus, Muhammad, Sidharta Gautama Buda…
    But no Gods. Just persons like anyone on earth.
    There should not be any person nor god that tell us how to dress. If there were any existing god , then it/she/ would bother in ruling the clothes of stupid human beings like us? oh, come on, please!
    If there is democracy, will you publish this post?, if there is not fear, will you publish this? Probably not. And that is sad.

    1. Al2 years ago

      Sadly, you exemplify why non-Catholic Christians do not believe Catholics are considered Christians. None of you study the Word of God, your “priests” hold to chanting and wearing silly costumes, you pray to Mary (paganism), and you’re taught the Pope is the intermediary between men and God (blasphemous, as JESUS is the intermediary between men and God).

      Small wonder you fell away from the Faith.

      As for dress, since biblical times it was customary for married women to cover the top of their hair as a symbol they’re covered by their husband (and to dress modestly insomuch that they’re not displaying cleavage, torso nor above calf). To cover a woman head-to-toe is inhumane and flies in the face of anything God would desire for his daughters. It’s actually downright unhealthy both physically and mentally to treat a woman so.

    2. Noush Kar1 year ago

      Oh my, it seems like at the end we all become followers of the same religion… 🙂

    3. Anonymous1 year ago

      Al – it is obvious that you are blind. signs of God is all around us….the only true religion is “OBEY ME” so what ever you call yourself, you are going to be accountable for your actions….and your children. As for dress…..to be covered up is a protection for women. in this western society/babalon you can be, do and wear what ever you want. there is no reverance for God and his laws. You talk God but you dont’ know him. you just follow those pagan holidays that your book (Bible) says not to do, you do it anyway, What does that make a person who is in opposition to God/Righteousness?

  5. Azza Radwan Sedky2 years ago

    A woman has the right to wear whatever she pleases as long as she isn’t forced to do so.
    This is what is happening in Egypt “An untrodden path, removing the hijab” azzasedky.typepad.com/egypt/2015…

  6. Farida2 years ago

    Unfortunately I see alot of misinformed or uninformed comments on here. As a Muslim woman, I’m sick and tired of people acting like I am oppressed or some man forced me to wear my hijab. Why can’t it be believable that I’m actually comfortable in covering my body? And it’s sad that alot of Muslims are so mired in culture that they don’t even understand their religion. This hijab isn’t about a man. It is a command from God, just like praying. It’s about you and God. If you’re doing it for society or for a man, then sadly you’re doing it for the wrong reasons. What’s also forgotten is that Muslim men, too, have a dress code but many of them are ignorant of that fact too. I have non-Muslim friends who prefer not to wear skimpy clothes too but no one says that they are oppressed. I started covering late for what’s required Islamically actually and was never told by my parents to do so. In fact I covered more than my mother because I WANT TO. My father even asked if I was sure that I wanted to cover when I decided I did. I’m very independent and I’ve always totally resented society telling me what to wear or look like (and that includes uncomfortable high heels, short skirts, tank tops) and the constant pressure for women to look like a fake model (mind you I’m in shape and been told I look great with skimpy clothes so I like my body.) Honestly, the most ridiculous look to me is the woman tottering in some high heels with a short dress on in the dead of winter while her male escort is fully clothed in a suit jacket and slacks. NOW THAT’s oppression. She can’t lie and say that’s comfy. Simply ridiculous. And about being hot, you can ask the nomads from the desert who cover themselves (men and women) from head to toe even before the coming of Islam if they’re hot. I’m sure the Sahara desert is alot hotter than almost all of the western world. Give me a break!

    1. Anissa Mrad2 years ago

      I wish all muslims think this way Farida I really respect and like what you have said but unfortunately you are amongst the minority who are aware that this is about you and God,not people,a choice with a total belief and faith because the majority of women wear the hijab out of obligation;(pressure from parents,husband or society),to get married(and I see this alot),to cover her disastrous hair, I even met girls who wear it at the same time they drink alcohol and smoke.others wear it with alot of makeup and tight clothes on and I don’t want to judge them as they do to a non-covered women but this is really absurd.So when the majority is massive thus it gives the bad impression about al mutahajiba.
      All my respect for women who wear the hijab with faith,love and obedience to God and only him.

  7. Mccloud3 years ago

    I notice Iran is not included. Was there a particular reason for that?

    1. Al2 years ago

      Literally most of Muslims living in countries other than Iran are Sunni Muslim, and they mostly do not consider Iranian Shiite Muslims, as Real Muslims!!

  8. Constance3 years ago

    The reason why women are supposed to cover up their hair, etc., is to not encourage men to think of them in sexual terms.
    I heard that Mohammad commanded the women to cover up because his men couldn’t control themselves. Basically, blame the victim, not the perpetrator.
    Every time I see a Muslim woman covered up, I recoil because she’s buying into that belief.
    Surely she knows the reason why that tradition got started? Surely she sees the error in that instruction?
    I don’t understand or approve of this tradition. It seems very chauvinistic to me.
    The men need to control their thoughts. Women shouldn’t need to accommodate ‘dirty minds.’ That’s going backwards as a species, to me. The men need to evolve, and we, as women, need to demand that.

    1. Alex Paradis2 years ago

      You are completely right.

  9. Fadi3 years ago

    Lebanon shouldn’t be considered in this poll. Its not a muslim country as nearly 40% of population is Christian, and the lebanese president is Christian always by law.

    So research if it has to include women from lebanon, the title should change how people in middle east and north africa region prefer women to dress in public.

    1. Bubbles3 years ago

      yes I noted that Fadi. Thank God.

  10. Shahin3 years ago

    Largest population of Muslim are Indonesia & India. Pakistan,Bangladesh,Indonesia & India All these four countries 70% ladies don’t wear hijab. Prophet yousuf al Salam was so handsome, BB Zohra maids cut thare fingers just looking at his beauty.So men should wear proper attire so they don’t get attracted to women. Hijab is not mandatory cannot be forced by law & rules.

  11. Haig3 years ago

    Lebanon is not a Muslim country. It might contain many Muslims true but by laws the statement is false. Unless you’ve asked all Lebanese Muslim people the way they want their woman to look, which is nearly impossible, your table concerning Lebanon isn’t 100% accurate.

    1. Ghassan3 years ago

      well said!!

  12. Silas3 years ago

    This article draws conclusions that present Middle Eastern people as more conservative than is warranted by their data.

    The survey asked people which style they preferred above all, not which they thought appropriate. So this can’t actually tell us how many people actually mind women not covering their hair or face, only what style they like most. For example, a religious woman who prefers Niqab might also be a feminist who believes that women should be allowed to wear whatever they please.

  13. Abu el lanmar3 years ago

    Absolutely ridiculous. Nobody, men OR women, should be made to wear this strange outfit. Do you have any idea how stupid this looks. If you don’t want your women to be noticed DON’T MAKE THEM WEAR CLOTHING THAT MAKES THEM SO NOTICABLE!

    1. 3 years ago

      well the islam said that we have to wear this no matter how ridiculous you think it looks well you wont look as bad as you think when your in a society that wears this well actually its rare when you see people wear whats in the first photo and if you see Muslims in other countries i dont think they look bad with a hijab and a un-fitted jeans and muslim women are not forced to wear that in other country its something between you and your god. And this outfit was made so men dont put their full attention on how women look its more about the personalty. and for the people that say its so the women doesnt get raped well most rapists have sick minds they wont think about how women look. thats why even in islamic countries there are woman that get rapped but it helps with grabbing less attention to your body. i hope i wasnt rude to you or anything.

      1. Katja Sipple3 years ago

        Please show me exactly where it states that. It defies logic to think that men will stop thinking about women’s bodies and looks if a woman covers up. Have you never heard the saying that forbidden fruits are the sweetest? The sexual assault and rape statistics of veiled women in Egypt, Pakistan and elsewhere speak for themselves. I recommend the following link for your perusal:


        Furthermore, why is it the woman’s responsibility to prevent men from taking advantage of them? Why can’t men be responsible for their own morality and behavior? Does Islam think that men are so weak and sexually driven that they won’t be able to contain themselves when looking at a woman’s hair?

        Last but not least, I also want to briefly address how the headscarf is really a political symbol. Yes, that’s right, it’s a symbol of political Islam. Allow me to explain: the current political climate in many Muslim countries is very anti-Western. The West is seen as the ultimate nemesis — made worse by the fact that our living standards, economic success, etc. are generally so much higher than in the Muslim world. Most Muslim countries are poor; that’s a fact, and I am sure it doesn’t well with political/religious leaders and the masses that the Great Satan and his minions are doing rather well when compared to their own countries. This discrepancy along with a lack of jobs and very young populations who have no/few prospects is giving rise to radical interpretations of Islam. Compare the number of women who cover now with the number of women who wore a headscarf, etc. in the 1950s and 60s, and the look at what happened in the Islamic world: the rise of political Islam starting with the Iranian Revolution in 1979.

        BTW, historically, the practice of veiling predates Islam (ancient Mesopotamian sources provide proof), so how can it be that you claim: “well the islam said that we have to wear this no matter how ridiculous you think it looks.”? The ancient texts make it very clear that this is a cultural, and not a religious practice. I see the veil as a symbol of inequality as it sexualises women and puts the responsibility of preventing sexual abuse firmly on them, and a sign of patriarchal and misogynistic beliefs.

        Additional reading material can be found here:

    2. Same one3 years ago

      This is how we wear and this is how should it be.

      1. Bubbles3 years ago

        Says you. You’re alowing yourself to be oppressed. And you don’t see it. I’ll bet many women do. For a start, is it comfortable? Can you move freely to do your work? Oh that’s right you’re not allowed to work….what about heat??? What about vitamin d? What about the weight. No… You’re oppressed and no it is definitely not how it should be.

        1. Anonymous1 year ago


  14. markia3 years ago

    I think women should be able to wear whatever these they please, and should not be punished or judge because of it.I think it is also sexist that women have to cover up, and for the most part the males do not. I understand that its a tradition as well as a norm ,but I’m sure there are women who would like to make their own decision about what they want to wear. If it was me personally I would not like the idea of having to cover my face and hair, while unless it was cold outside that is.

    1. saeed3 years ago

      You might want to cover your hair and face because of bright sunny days, you would definitely want to cover your body with lots of clothing because you don’t want to catch cold, What would you do, if you believed you’d have to face bigger problems than just red face and cold/snow bites if you did not cover yourself up completely.
      This is what Muslim women believe in and why is it still such a concern about what Muslims wear.
      Being a Muslim, there is no such thing as moderate Islam and/or moderate Islamic belief/rule/way of life. Islam is Islam.
      It has nothing to do with tradition, It is pure Islamic and not norm.
      You want to know about something, come closer to it. What ever your perception about anything is, is entirely because of your experience with people associated to that thing. I’d suggest you look for people who truly follow Islam not ones who call themselves Muslims.

  15. eve3 years ago

    i think that women should be able to wear what ever they want

    1. saeed3 years ago

      I think you should not worry about what women want to do or do. You should know its Allah/God’s command and women wear it to please Allah/God. Unfortunately you’d say you don’t believe in God.
      As you don’t have the right to question doctor’s medical prescription same way for Islam.
      Just a Century ago, West and N.America was covering head men and women. Was entire humanity crazy?
      And just a few decades ago mankind realized they were at fault?
      Is not it funny, for thousands of years, the idea of covering head was believed to be okay and suddenly mankind got super intelligent.
      I am amazed at your practice of imposing your thoughts on others by calling it freedom of speech.
      Freedom is; You let the Muslims leave at peace as they please.
      Had your society have what Islam teaches, you’re social system would not be what it is today. No one knows who the father is, so they go by Mother’s maiden name.
      Muslims can be traced centuries back. It is difficult to understand for people who do not understand….

      1. sheri Beach3 years ago

        Please don’t come to America and suggest that if we were to wear muslim attire we wouldn’t have so many social ills. Please stay in your country and we will live in ours. I will never wear muslim attire and obey Allah……I will always be doing my own rhing….I do know who my Father is and I don’t think I appreciate the Muslims coming to my country and taking advantage of our economic advantages while siting our issues. I say stay home and continue to live your unique muslim lifestyle…..

  16. Good Deeds Unlimited3 years ago

    I’ve read twice. How many WOMEN were asked…..apart from the presence of a man? How many were women IN the presence of men? And, how many men were asked?

    I find this very upsetting, this small detail. I will read again, perhaps I missed it. If not, please respond!

  17. Jim Crint3 years ago

    Let women decide for themselves how they should dress without any interference from men.

    1. gu3 years ago

      It’s women who police this sort of thing not men. You simple minded person.

      1. Bubbles3 years ago

        He’s not that simple minded. The rule was set by a man, then by men, for the benefit of men… Women are so oppressed they go along with it blindly.

  18. Marta Masats3 years ago

    Really interesting! But wouldn’t it be more rellevant considering the figures by sex of the respondent? Congrats for the findings!

  19. Mouhannad ElSadi3 years ago

    Why don’t you run a research about acceptance of common people world wide to the issue of legalising gay and lesbian acts as personal right or freedom against religeous stand point of view in Jewdiasm, Christanity and Islam as well as other adopted religeons in the far east

  20. NDM3 years ago

    I would have liked to see the world’s largest Muslim country, Indonesia, included.

    1. PassingThru1013 years ago

      Wrong statement and wrong request! Indonesia has been intentionally excluded for a simple fact that Indonesia is NOT a muslim country. Granted, there is a lot of muslims in Indonesia, but that does not automatically make Indonesia a muslim country. Just like in Jakarta there is a lot of pickpockets and that does not Indonesia a pickpocket country.

      So, your statement is incorrect and your request is also incorrect. You need to check the Indonesia state ideology and its constitution to make a blanket statement such as that. In fact, Indonesia is a secular country based on unity in diversity as outlined in the state ideology, and the freedom of religion is guaranteed as described in its constitution.

      1. Ashlander3 years ago

        There are some Muslim-majority countries that like to keep up a pretense that they are secular. Indonesia is one of them. It is a member of the only organization in the world in which countries are together due to a shared religion – Organization of Islamic Countries.

  21. Brink3 years ago

    People= men instead of asking women.

  22. Zero Zero+Zero3 years ago

    Islamic Female Head Coverings ■ Face Masks ♦ With Grille (Burqa) Style No.1 ♦ With Slit (Niqab) Style No.2 [Special: Belly Dancer’s Half-Niqab] ■ Long Veil ♦ (Chador) Style No.3 ■ Short Veils ♦ Tight Veil (Hijab/ Khimar) Style No.4 [Coif + Wimple = Hijab] ♦ Loose Veil (Dupatta/ Shayla) Style No.5 [Saree: Ghoonghat] ■ No Veil or (Bandanna/ Bonnet) Style No.6

    Then what style of dress is appropriate for Muslim women in public?
    For Conservative/Orthodox/Rural: Style No.4
    For Liberal/Modern/Urban: Style No.5

  23. tan3 years ago

    ok! instead of surveying how many women prefer what type of veiling, it would be more informative to ask the opinion of women about their veil, whatever kind it may be. Because unlike what other people consider, these ladies are more satisfied, feel secure and strong with covering on their head. They seem to move about more freely in this outfit. this is what i have observed in the so-called-conservative Saudi Arabia. yes! they live a normal lifestyle like all other women, enjoying their lives, while still being different and satisfied. I really think they stand out of the everyday pressure of people around the world.

  24. Abdul3 years ago

    In Pakistan most women don’t wear burqa(face cover), I don’t know where they get this number. Mostly in Pakistan girls fall under the number 5 or you just can watch any YouTube video and see for yourself

    1. farhan3 years ago

      My dear you don’t understand the question first understand that reply, read againd How people in Muslim countries prefer women to dress in public

  25. Ali Mir3 years ago

    Why to even bother with what “you” would prefer “others” to wear… :\ Its everyone’s basic right to wear what he or she wants… No one else should have a say on that…

  26. Imran3 years ago

    Not sure who they speak with in Pakistan the great majority falls under #5. 2nd place should be to #3. #2 falls under minority.

  27. Media3 years ago

    In Pakistan, in rural area there will be about 50% people who go for #4 whereas in cities 50% are #5.While #2&3 are not more than 10% both in urban and rural . Infact the highest trends are for #4 and # 5 all over the country so in my view the research is not based on real representation.

    1. Sohail3 years ago

      I’m of the same opinion. Majority of Punjab, Kashmir, sindh and balochistan #4 in rural areas and #5 in urban areas are common. In KPK and tribal areas, the percentage of #2&3 would be quite higher. However regardless of that, women should be free to choose whatever they want to wear.

  28. carmela3 years ago

    Every day in the West are violated the rights of minorities (homosexuals, infertile couples, religious minorities) in the name of religious principles, but this does not create a stir: it is part of our cultural heritage. And in this case the assertion of his own will affect the rights of others and does not allow for compromise.
    It is not the religious nature of the problem of the burqa or the inability to see the eyes of a woman. The problem is that the liberty of the individual must apply to all and you have to negotiate it first of all on his own body, before that of others. Put his face, in short, to dispel any risk of hypocrisy. Also because every change, because it is true, must come from within, otherwise it is sterile taxation which creates further inequalities and rights.

    1. Anthony Newman3 years ago

      Actually, it creates quite a stir.

  29. Isabella Winarno3 years ago

    Well, out of the result, there’s a fact that attires my attention, why couldn’t I see Indonesia on the country list? Did the author miss the country which has the biggest muslim population? Surely the responses in Middle East countries would be “easily guessed”. Just apply the research in Indonesia and you’d get what we call as “anomaly” regarding to women appearance in public.

  30. Many Joys3 years ago

    Your results really should include comparative analysis based on gender. I suspect the women have a very different opinion, overall, than the men.

    1. sam3 years ago

      you forgot the bosnian muslim style …a scarf covering just the hair not the ears and neck…..quran even says cover their hair….jewish women in orthodox cover their hair..without covering ears and neck this is the best way to cover in 21st century

  31. jeff3 years ago

    the burka was designed for the desert for women safety not for religion at all this is a modern thought by male domination over women … women are equal to man in brains but not brawn ..even the men of yesterday covered their faces during sand storms

    1. Matt Ward3 years ago

      Not true, this is not a modern thought. I’ll take Saudi Arabia for example because I have lived there and know more about their culture. Centuries ago tribes on the Arabian peninsula covered their women because not only did they believe women to be inferior to men, but also it prevents feelings of lust in other males. They weren’t even allowed to speak to males outside their family unless told to by her husband or father. This belief still exists today, but it is gradually starting to decline. In fact I remember speaking to an American woman that was with me, not knowing that wasn’t okay, and out of nowhere the Mutaween (religious police) shoved me to the ground and shouted what I assumed was a threat. So while burqa’s may in fact help with the sun and sand storms they were not intended solely for that reason.

      1. Nf3 years ago

        this “BELIEF” is called religion.
        It is not what is on your head that counts but what is in it,my opinion.
        Has anyone seen a picture of the mother of Jesus without headcover?

        1. ditrysia3 years ago

          I am a [former] Catholic and indeed, I have. Often.
          Here’s the pope blessing one such image.

  32. SASSUI3 years ago

    In Pakistan was it just the taliban who were consulted by the researchers. The great majority of women in rural and urban areas go about unveiled and just have their heads covered – in urban areas their heads are rarely covered. Pakistan has a balanced and enlightened society at least regarding women’s appearance in public – so far.

  33. amina3 years ago

    Allah’s the best chooser all Muslim women follies only Qur’an & Sun-nah /itqillah

  34. mohammed yousuf3 years ago

    I am mohammed yousuf ,from dhaka university, yesterday in participate on this workshop on appearance study. it’s new for me ,really interesting. this article helps me to know the our cultural perspectives.

  35. kamran3 years ago

    Hey I’m just 9 and I’m studying iran and Muslims most girls have to do what men say because they do it for god

    1. Tanja3 years ago

      Everyone has the right to do what he or she wants. That is why God gave us common sense and free will, so we may decide what way we want to go. God does not want men to be taking womes rights away. He gave us different looks and different qualities, so we complete each other. God did not want men to hurt women or give them the feeling not be worthy. If someone does this, it is very bad.
      God made everything in the universe and God lives in everything. So if that is so, we must treat everything and everyone with respect and seek God in every person and every animal and every plant, stone and water. Namaste, Shalom, Salam

  36. maryann cauley4 years ago

    I think if hair should be covered then men should wear the same thing as the women.
    I think it’s just men being possessive.

    1. Abdulbagi4 years ago

      man and woman are not alike in their structure,, why skin cancer is increased in women and few in men ( women wearing few clothes -partially naked- exposed to higher amount of uv light from the sun but men they are exposed and yet low incidence of infection ) . Women have higher fat than men which replaced by muscles .

      1. EJM3 years ago

        That’s not true. CDC reports that less women from all races on average get skin cancer and die from it than men. cdc.gov/cancer/skin/statistics/r…

      2. u dumb2 years ago

        thats completely irrelevant. shouldn’t religion be about equality of both sexes? maybe men should cover themselves too…? why is it ok for men to show skin and not women? why are women being punished for something men ‘cant’ control? instead of covering women, we should be teaching men to control themselves and how to act in front of a lady.

    2. jeff3 years ago

      yes you are so right ……

    3. Tanja3 years ago

      Is this cancer promotion another try to keep women in fear, so they won’t expose their skin? 😉
      The arab world plus the Islam and traditions are partriarchially structured. It is time to change this. I really don’t know what the issue is to get control over the male sex drive and let women choose freely what to wear? Men can educate themselves and control themselves and still see a human being in a woman, without harassing her, without raping or hurting her or wanting to oppress her. Women are totally objectivfied – worst in the Arab World. We demand men to evolve and educate their hearts and minds regarding a more compassionate and understanding behavior towards us women.

      As long as there is no inappropriate thought in your minds, there can’t be any inappropriate way of dressing oneself. Freedom and peace starts in the mind and heart. If you love your women, let them dress freely and support them to try another way of being. Why not. You do not lose anything. You only can win, because a happy woman will truly love and respect you. Respect their desicions now, just as she respected yours for thousands of years…

      1. saeed3 years ago

        If you were doing what is right and already decided by Allah/God, you’d not have needed to request Man to change their pervert minds at women. Man’s perversion can not be taken away. But it could be countered by women dressing appropriately and men to fast and not even gaze at women.
        But If woman appears naked/half naked/ some skin showing/figure apparent from the dress, she’s addressing attention at herself.
        Allah/God can create and yet Allah/God is not smart enough to tell what is smart for society and individuals?
        Veil has been decided by Allah/God not man.

        1. hana3 years ago

          well, this opinion belongs to middle ages not today modern world.

  37. Rayane Loveuee4 years ago


    1. m3 years ago

      There is nothing wrong with not wearing hijab, it is a personal choice that a woman should make for herself, not a choice that society should make for her. That said, even if you choose not to wear hijab, you still must dress modestly (wearing long-sleeved shirts, and pants/skirts that cover the ankles). You should not put down a woman just because she chooses not to wear hijab. No one has to answer to you, they only need to answer to Allah.

  38. Jack4 years ago

    “while an additional 11% say that the burqa worn by woman #1 is the most appropriate style of public dress for women.”
    This is worded incorrectly it should say
    “while only 11% say that the burqa worn by woman #1 is the most appropriate style of public dress for women.”

  39. Philippe4 years ago

    f.y.i. the niquab is banned in most of saudi (some women may wear a traditional metal face shield as seen in the emirates) but the wear an abaya and veil but not the slit eye kind

  40. Carla Bussa4 years ago

    The Median for WOMAN 6 is 15,43 actually.. which makes a huge difference!!!

  41. kouki4 years ago

    im tunisian, your statics are completely wrong!!! let us in peace nobody here asked about your opinion!!

  42. CARPED4 years ago

    pl. see the statistics, the total is not 100% in most of the cases. raises many questions on the research / study ?

    1. L3 years ago

      Raises many questions? Maybe it doesn’t add up to 100 percent because some people picked a “no opinion” option.

  43. Ivy4 years ago

    I don’t see the point in this research at all. Should we celebrate that a certain number of people think it is appropiate for muslim women to dress in a less conservative way than may be portrayed in the media? I believe as an atheist and a feminist that it is irrelevant what people (that is men and women) generally believe is appropiate to wear for women in public. Neither men, nor women should be able to influence women’s clothing choices. Every woman must be free to dress the way she wants, whether that means covering her body or exposing it. I don’t see the point of religious leaders prescribing rules for their followers to abide to. If someone calls themself a muslim, he or she is sincere to the religion they have faith in. It must be the love for that religion that influences their clothing choice. Not public opinion or anyone else. I am not a fan of the niqab and I’ll admit that, but I do believe that a woman must have the right to wear one. She just needs to have a choice in it. If religion is really about love and tolerance, then public opinion is irrelevant. The believer should choose his or her own way.

  44. Fatimah4 years ago

    As a muslim woman who grew up in Africa, Middle East and Pakistan I am very glad to see this research however narrow it may be. It’s a reflection of the state of all other aspects in the selected countries.

    For the record – people may definitely have and opinion on how Muslim women should dress and take a leftist or rightist approach – but the bottom line is clear and simple – hijab is prescribed by Allah and it’s a woman’s right towards the God she believes in to follow it to the best of HER knowledge – not her neighbors or her neighboring country.

    It’s heartening to see the different flaws/ issues and opinions voiced on this article in an objective and mature manner! Kudos to the readers.

    1. L3 years ago

      If that’s your religious belief, then it’s fine. The issue is not the covering, it’s the fact that women are FORCED to cover. No one should be able to force another human being to do anything.

  45. Warrina B.4 years ago

    If a man conducted this survey, then he quickly learned that it is not considered acceptable in Muslim culture to simply walk up and start speaking to a woman you don’t know. She could be beaten for talking with the surveyor since he(??) was not one of her family members. So it would be REALLY IMPORTANT statistically to know the gender of the surveyors and the gender of those surveyed to get an idea of what is REALLY considered acceptable cultural thought on a woman’s appearance.

    1. Farrukh4 years ago

      Lolz Warrina B, I live in Pakistan and here it’s not the case!. From where you guys got such ideas. I’m really laughing like hell LOLz

    2. R R4 years ago

      Your mind is so full of fundamentalism that you consider “really important” to know the gender of the surveyor. Are you serious!? Give us a break man, this world has no more room for narrow-minded opinions…

  46. Dr. MacKay4 years ago

    Well, well, I don’t think this is covering all women in the ‘Muslim countries’ since you don’t include Indonesia, the most Muslim populated country in this earth (88% of total 230 millions population.) We love colors, as we are from tropical regions with green vegetation and colorful flowers all year long, plus the Asian-Western (350 years under Dutch) cross culture have made a distinctive flair in hijab and/or abaya (Indonesian uses term ‘gamis’ for this) colors and fashion styles.

  47. Bahar Ahmad Khan4 years ago

    Muslims are divided between many schools of thought. Hence the differences of practice on Islamic rules. Hijab is also among the rules which have been of varied views since the era of companions (of Muhammad peace be upon him). Views supporting woman 5 and 6 are the result of western culture and education as well as secularism, democracy and liberalism etc.

    for more detail:



  48. Roger Eli4 years ago

    I believe its an open option for any lady to decide how she’d carry herself in public, as she knows better in this free world. for God sake

    1. Tun Eks4 years ago

      During the peak of ben ali’s tyranny police was ordered to assault women wearing any kind of scarf, students would get harassed, sanctioned , sometimes even dragged out of the schools and stripped.

      That war was waged under the banner of progression freedom , womens rights and “state feminism” …

      1. Farrukh4 years ago

        Tun Eks! The western Freedom is Nakedness so if you get naked you are free but if you want to cover yourself thats being oppressed Lolz

    2. JB0073 years ago

      Roger Eli,a voice of commonsense.If every person thought like that,we would not need a discussion like this,in the 21st century.

  49. kittykaren4 years ago

    Also undesirable anyone did not include the selection of an colourful scarf which addresses the actual curly hair totally (option 5 seems to be get away from many curly hair exposed). This can be popular involving younger ladies within Palestine. In reality, usually the scarf will be shade matched up having other attire.

  50. Margaret Roberts4 years ago

    Too bad you did not include the option of a colorful scarf that covers the hair completely (option 5 appears to leave some hair exposed). This is popular among young women in Palestine. In fact, often the scarf is color coordinated with the rest of the outfit.

  51. me4 years ago

    what percentage of the respondents were women? I’m interested to know how women voted and compare women’s preference to men’s. The article never discusses women’s own views which leads the reader to think the respondents are men imposing their preferences on women. the survey and results should be disaggregated for useful results – supporting women to follow their own preference.

  52. Salima Philo4 years ago

    Nous gardons le rythme de la voile de la liberté de la mode Algérie de porter chacun comme il lui plaît Bloomer est les la plupart des vêtements que nous avons aujourd’hui.

  53. Michael Lust4 years ago

    In NO country, not even Saudi Arabia, did #1 obtain a majority… in most, it got only a tiny percentage of support, two percent or less (the other extreme, #6, was more strongly supported almost everywhere)… and almost half of all those surveyed, EVEN in Saudi Arabia, thought that the decision ought to be left to the women themselves. I am surprised only to see which countries favored the more authoritarian approach: Iraq, Egypt, Pakistan. The whole exercise does underscore how hard it is for those of us who never see these places for ourselves to obtain an accurate picture of attitudes there.

  54. Mohamed Hedi Mejai4 years ago

    Results not very much surprising…

  55. Edison4 years ago

    Dress is one of mankind’s cultural heritage and God had never specified any kind/model of dresses to be used by men or women. In the beginning of man’s history, as told in the Bible, God made tunics of skin to clothe Adam and Eve (Gen 3:21). So, it is clear that God did not specify any kind/model of dress to be used by men or women. Being intelligent creatures, surely God give freedom for men and women to design any kind/model of dress that suit their needs and we would find it very absurd if God should interfere with men or women for such a trifling matter. Therefore, we should not believe in the faith mentioning that every decision (including dress to wear) is pre-decided by God for mankind.

    1. Sean4 years ago

      no one cares; the bible is fiction

      1. mesaman4 years ago

        You fancy yourself as the spokesman for all humanity? What an ego problem you must work through.

      2. mesaman4 years ago

        Try elsewhere Sean. Millions disagree with you.

      3. MMb4 years ago

        Not fiction, per se. More along the lines of myth and legend. Jesus was a historical person, as was Muhammed. It’s what people ascribed to them and wrote about them hundreds of years later that has so muddled the waters.

      4. European4 years ago

        Sean is right.
        That book is fiction, scientifically proven.
        Bible believers try prove the opposite, they can never succeed.
        The truth can’t be denied, even if millions believe in the fiction book.
        Let them believe LOL

    2. bisa4 years ago

      surely you r talking from your OWN point of view and according to the bible. most
      people in the countries mentioned in the survey have a different point of view derived from their own sacred book and their religion .
      not all people should be the Same . however we should all respect each other’s views.

      1. EQ8Rhomes3 years ago

        A little late, but we have to acknowledge that there are mythologies and religious dicta that do not support Abrahmic proscriptions. Therfore, Abrahamic dicta are limited to adherents of the related religions. They are not for all humans. Get that!
        ‘Adam and Eve’ were naked. Take evolution from there.Clothes are protection from the elements and critters. We know that and don’t need religion to teach us that. Each region has it own natural clothing demands.Accept that.

    3. Someone who has studied bible history4 years ago

      You seriously quote THE BIBLE to make a point it´s clear “God did not specify any kind/model of dress to be used by men or women.”? Do you even know how much it is written about which type of clothes and other things to wear and not to wear in there? Apparantly not. Well let me tell you.

      Firstly the verse you quoted from genesis: Tunic is just the simple word of some translation of a translation of a english translation and as such far from a detailed direct translation of that verse. It specifies “kesonos ohr” -hebrew for a long robe/khaftan- if you look in the orthodox jewish bible. That is as close to the original as you can get. But do remember we do not have acsess to the original scripture, that´s just a translation in the original language.

      Secondly have you never read the New Testaments specifications when it comes to clothes and accessories? It is belived that the hebrew versions was written before the greek and arameic, so I will quote those, but you can find this in all bible translations based on the greek and arameic texts aswell.

      Kehillah in Corinth I 11 (The letter to the Chorinthians)

      Orthodox Jewish Bible (OJB)

      11 Become imitators of me as I also am an imitator of Rebbe, Melech HaMoshiach.

      2 Now, I commend you that in all things you have remembered me and you hold fast to the masoret torat haShlichim just as I transmitted and handed them over to you.

      3 But I want you to have da’as that Rebbe, Melech HaMoshiach is the rosh (head) of every one of the Bnei Adam, and the rosh of an isha is the ben Adam (Man, Ba’al) [BERESHIS 3:16], and the rosh of Moshiach is Hashem. [BERESHIS 3:16]

      4 Every ben Adam davening or speaking forth a nevu’ah (prophecy) having anything hanging down over his rosh brings bushah (shame) upon his rosh.

      5 But every isha davening or speaking forth a nevu’ah (prophecy) in shul, begile rosh (with head uncovered), brings bushah (shame) upon her rosh, for it is one and the same thing to uncover the rosh as it is for the rosh of the isha having been shaved. [DEVARIM 21:12]

      6 For, if an isha is not covered, also let her be shorn. But als (since) it is in fact a thing of bushah (shame) for an isha to be shorn or to be shaved, let her be covered.

      7 For a ben Adam indeed ought not to be covered on the rosh, being the demut HASHEM (BERESHIS 1:26) and the kavod Hashem, and the Isha being the kavod (glory), the glorious reflection of Adam. [BERESHIS 1:26; 5:1; 9:6]

      8 For Adam is not out of the Isha but Isha out of Adam (Man) [BERESHIS 2:21-23].

      9 Indeed, Adam was not created because of the Isha, but the Isha because of Adam (Man) [BERESHIS 2:18].

      10 Because of this, the Isha ought to have a kesut rosh (head covering) of marut (authority, discipline) on her rosh because of the malachim. (Angels)

      11 However, neither is Isha without Adam (Man) nor Adam (Man) without Isha in Hashem.

      12 For just as the Isha comes out of Adam (Man) [BERESHIS 2:21-23], so also the ben Adam (Man) comes through the Isha [Gn 3:15-16] but all things are of Hashem [BERESHIS 1:1; TEHILLIM 24:1; 50:12; 89:11].

      13 You yourselves be the dayan (judge): is it fitting for an isha to offer tefillos to Hashem [in shul] begile rosh (with head uncovered)?

      14 Does not teva (nature) itself give you the shiur (lesson) that if a ben Adam wears a long hair-do of a lady’s coiffure, it is a dishonor to him?

      15 But if an isha wears a long hairdo of a lady’s coiffure, it is her kavod (SHIR HASHIRIM 4:1)? Because the long hair has been given to her instead of the sterntichel (kerchief) or kesut rosh (head covering).

      16 But if anyone presumes in his thinking to be contentious, we have no such minhag, nor do the kehillot of Hashem [throughout the world].

      Kehillah in Thessalonika I 5

      Orthodox Jewish Bible (OJB)

      16 Have simcha always.

      17 Daven unceasingly. (Be in a constant state of prayer)

      18 In everything offer hodayah, for this is the ratzon Hashem in Moshiach Yehoshua for you.

      This is why nuns throughout history wore veils as they clothingstyle all the time. They didn´t do it for cultural reasons, as they where to be separated from the cultures they lived in.

      Timotiyos I 2

      Orthodox Jewish Bible (OJB)

      9 Similarly also nashim (women) should adorn themselves with respectable comportment and tznius (modesty, piety) in appearance and with decency and propriety, not with coiffures and gold or pearls or costly clothing,

      Devarim 22

      Orthodox Jewish Bible (OJB)

      5 The isha shall not wear that which pertaineth unto a gever (man) neither shall a gever put on simlat isha (garment of a woman); for all that do so are to’avat unto Hashem Eloheicha.

      This last verse about men not dressing like women and vice verrsa seems to be reffering to the veil, since that is the only difference in clothes we see in the oldest paintings of the followers of the Messiach. Everyone, men and women, wore modest long robes/khaftans back then, so it can not refer to pants and dresses like many today belive. It seems from all the old peintings we can see they belived that verse from genesis meant long khaftans.

      I could topp this off by quoting all the warnings against the last time in the bible. But I think I will just say the typical immodest dress of todays western society is definitely not taken lightly, but as a serious sign, according to the bible immodesty in dress/appearance is not a trifling matter.

  56. Yussef k4 years ago

    How do we know this survey is invalid? How people in muslim countries.. Lebanon is the only christian country in the MEA and that is a fact! So please mr researcher try to research more next time when you want to post a statistical survey on a “fact” blog.

    1. Michael Lust4 years ago

      Lebanon is not a “Christian country”. The majority is Muslim… Christians are a plurality only if one distinguishes Shia from Sunni, and Druze from Muslims, but no particular confession dominates the nation. Balancing that three-legged stool (Maronite, Shiite, Sunni) was the only method of (relatively) stable governance that has occurred in the country since the departure of the French… and even that did not survive the invasions of the Israelis.

  57. katherine dolan4 years ago

    This survey would be more valuable a) if we knew who was being asked the question, by gender, age, ethnicity, religion, etc.; and b) if we knew who [for those who didn’t want women to select their own clothes] they thought should be selecting them.

    The fact ANYBODY thinks a woman should not be ‘permitted’ to select her own clothing says a lot about that part of the world. After all, we are in the 21st century.

    1. Niels Georg Bach Christensen4 years ago

      They know. They have published it on the MEV web side, but at the moment it has been withdrawn

  58. Payira Bonnie4 years ago

    So absurd how people take their time thinking of what doesn’t change their lives.Religion is just on Toxic calt.

  59. Pierre-Jacques Beaugrand4 years ago

    This research(?) or enquiry is methodologically flawed.
    It should have been the exact and same woman, with the same expression (smile, or not) use as the model in each alternative.
    Here the feminine model used varies from picture to picture.
    There is a bias probably introduced by the beauty or appearance of the model.
    In addition, the order of appearance on the line should have been varied randomly as well.

    Do not believe these results.
    They may even be the result of preconceptions of the guy who made this so-called research.

    To the trash!!

    1. aymen4 years ago

      Good point

  60. imran4 years ago

    Islam is not personal property. if women has true islamic faith in her she has no difficulties doing their daily routine work even she is doing jobs. if women has no faith in islam she have she will do what ever attract her like western non muslimic culture to adopt.

    So please become true muslim and put faith in islam where every decision is pre decided for muslims and mankind.
    nobody allowed to make decisions against islam. its pre decide From Allah and His Holly Prophet Hazrat Muhammad PBUH, a women must be in veil(HIJAAB) i request to all women who are muslims must be in veil(Hijaab) and be forgived by ALLAH.

    1. Patrick4 years ago

      Ok buddy get this… what if your wrong? what if there is a different god or none at all? also why should she not get the same rights as you what makes her different in fact she might be better!

      1. Ayesha4 years ago

        I AM THE WOMAN IN THE SECOND PICTURE. Because when I go out, I go out like that. Mine is a female only household. No male to rule me or to tell me what to do. I am the voluntary hijabi. I love hijab, I feel respected in that, safe in that. I don’t feel myself under constant scrutiny. Doing hijab is obligatory for every woman.Doing hijab has not prevented me from getting higher education or from getting straight A’s. Why don’t you believe it that true hijabis are HAPPY in their hijab. I don’t feel ruled by any man, I just feel ruled by God. And since God loves me, I’m happy abiding by His rules. Those muslim women who bad mouth hijab, have a faith lacking in strength. I embraced this religion with love. I find peace in it. I feel liberated in it. The hijab just reminds me that the person ‘inside’ is important. We are so ruled by faces, materials, and on the surface images that we lose sight of what’s important and what’s not! Thankyou 🙂 This on my part is a friendly view put forward. And Allah knows the Best.

    2. Lina4 years ago

      Im sorry, but as a woman, no man rules me. As a human, I live my life as I see fit.

    3. Shawqi Khaleel4 years ago

      This is a most reactionary interpretation of Islamic Law and it is one sided. God gave us brain to use ,which is stronger than any interpretation. During the Prophet’s life some verses of the Quraan were modified ( Naskh) in order to meet new needs and requirements. This is the greatness of Islam, because it adapts to new circumstances and needs. Those reactionary people (Wahabi, Salafists) are going to hurt Islam more than anything else.

      1. bisa4 years ago

        are u allowed to modify the quran now?

        1. faryal shah4 years ago

          no modifications in Quran were made in Prophet’s (s.a.w) life….correct urself….

    4. Michael Lust4 years ago

      “Islam is not personal property”, you say. Neither are women the property of anyone else. The notion that human freedom is obsolete, that every decision is already made…by a religion… for every individual, is absurd. That notion ignores the FACT that Muslims do not agree (about a great many things)… and if Islam were really so comprehensive as to assert to have made every possible human decision, that would be a reason to find that religion to be a crime against humanity. Any ideology that entirely eradicates or forbids human liberty should be extinguished like a fatal disease.

  61. Ibrahim Abdullahi Bulle4 years ago

    I totally agree Muslim women should cover they head not the face

    1. Lina4 years ago

      What about muslim men then? Shouldnt they be covered equally? Women arent breeding stock or any mans personal belongings. They are their own.

    2. Pascale4 years ago

      Cover YOUR face and then tell us how pleasant it is !

  62. Sarah4 years ago

    As a woman and a lawyer, life would be better for men and women if people stopped telling us what to wear. Why can’t we focus on practicing universal love and kindness? This preoccupation and obsession with covering hair and faces distracts people from doing important things. Things that actually matter. It’s an archaic and base mindset filled with victim blaming ideologies. Men can shave their beards and wear jeans and women can wear skirts and uncover their hair. It doesn’t matter. The only thing that matters is whether or not you have tried your best to make a positive difference in the lives of those around you.

    1. Alex4 years ago

      Good point, Sarah, however the thing is, it is not about anyone forcing anyone to do anything (active – compultion), but is more about the socially acceptable norms (passive – fitting to the norms of the society). To understand it better, try to go down the street totally naked anywhere in a regular western country. The laws differ, not necessarily some will ban you from doing this. Or compulse you to ANYTHING. It is that both of us (I suppose) understand that it does go against some kind of social norms, which differ from one society to another.
      Cheers! 🙂

      1. Ralph4 years ago

        Good point, but compultion and compulse are not words. Do you mean compel?

        1. Alex4 years ago

          thefreedictionary.com/compulsion this is a noun I meant, and the verb, yes, compel, apologies for my English.

      2. Sarah4 years ago

        And I’m saying all of that is unimportant. East, West, North, South. Stop telling people what to wear. I understand there are different social norms, but some of them carry more weight than others. Showing your face and hair should be the last thing on peoples minds when helping an old lady cross the street.

  63. Allah4 years ago

    Turkey is worse than Lebanon

  64. Mangasa Samosir4 years ago

    The original text is below

    I do not see any problem in women’s clothing that is closed ( Muslim clothes ) , because it is clearly covered clothes suggestive of high sanctity should be maintained seriously by women . In our neutral minds of men will be more comfortable if friends with a woman dressed in a closed ( Muslim woman’s dress ) . For very many clothes a Muslim woman would distract the wild men , especially when located in a quiet place from hustle .
    According to what I see from the story of the Biblical Scriptures actually Muslim women’s clothes women’s clothing is the same as in the time of Abraham 4000 years ago , because it is Muslim women’s clothing is the official clothing of female offspring born to Abraham both Mother Sara and the birth of Mother Hagar . But in line with the passage of time with all its problems , has led to a change in the case of women , especially of the descendants of Abraham Mother Sarah ( read Christian women ) .
    The occurrence of a change of clothing associated with women ‘s lives since the birth of the nation of Israel is constantly under the colonization / heavy pressure nations – other nations . So that as a nation are in a dangerous situation / life threatening , or may not be so for the sake of safety , they will often make a breakthrough / changes that violate customs or traditions that exist in the ancestor ‘s life there is a place far away in the Land of the birth of Jacob . / Israel . Then, due to the advancement of mankind civilization fully supported by the progress of Science and Technology , was the scientists and experts of new discoveries in the field of Science and Technology is dominated ( much ) by Yahuhdi descendants ( House of Israel ) ; then various rapid changes that occur in the Nation of Israel consciously or unconsciously become the model umun especially in developed countries and countries outside the Middle East .
    Due to the closed model women’s clothing ( dress of Muslim women ) are the ancestors of clothing Judaism , Christianity and Islam ( Father of Believers ie Abraham ) , then I suggest that all those who believe in the God of Abraham loving closed women’s clothing ( Baju Muslim women ) . And all the women of Religion Abraham must have at least one fruit Clothes Muslim women , these suits must be worn at the time of the Feast of the Passover was celebrated to Judaism sought the most appropriate for a Muslim woman wearing this .
    If all women had collectively Religion of Abraham – both like Baju Muslim waanita , then what if Jesus Christ would later group including Mr. Abraham down to earth of ours, then it certainly will make them very happy and happy . Because in addition to show unity and harmony Uamat Religion of Abraham , also a kind of nostalgia will be very memorable for the Celestial group . And akirnya , if the second coming of Jesus Christ and their entourage just see Muslim women who wear the protective clothing , then it is not possible all the heavenly entourage would denounce women’s clothing sexy ( sexy ) and praised Muslim women clothing .

    Saya tidak melihat adanya permasalahan pada pakaian wanita yang tertutup (baju Muslim), sebab pakaian tertutup itu jelas memberi kesan adanya nilai kesucian yang tinggi yang harus dijaga secara sungguh-sungguh oleh kaum wanita. Secara pikiran netral kita kaum laki-laki akan akan lebih nyaman apabila berteman dengan wanita berpakaian tertutup (baju wanita muslim). Sebab sedikit banyak baju wanita muslim akan mengalihkan pikiran liar para kaum laki-laki, terutama ketika berada di tempat yang sepi dari keramaian.
    Menurut yang saya lihat dari cerita Kitab Suci Bibel sesungguhnya pakaian wanita muslim itu sama dengan pakaian wanita pada jaman Abraham 4000 tahun yang lalu, karena itu pakaian wanita Muslim adalah pakaian resmi wanita dari keturunan Abraham baik yang lahir dari Ibu Sara maupun yang lahir dari Ibu Hagar. Tetapi sejalan dengan perjalanan waktu dengan segala permasalahannya, telah mendorong terjadinya perubahan dalam hal pakaian wanita Abraham terutama dari keturunan Ibu Sara ( baca wanita Kristen).
    Terjadinya perubahan pakaian wanita ini berhubungan dengan kehidupan Bangsa Israel yang semenjak lahirnya secara terus menerus berada dalam penjajahan / tekanan berat bangsa – bangsa lain. Sehingga sebagai bangsa yang berada dalam situasi berbahaya / mengancam kehidupan, tidak boleh tidak atau demi keselamatan, mereka akan sering melakukan terobosan/ perubahan yang melanggar adat atau tradisi yang ada dalam kehidupan nenek moyang yang ada tempat jauh di Tanah kelahiran Yakub./ Israel. Kemudian karena kemajuan Peradaban umat manusia sepenuhnya ditopang oleh kemajuan Ilmu Pengetahuan dan Teknologi, sedang para ilmuan dan para ahli penemuan baru dalam bidang Ilmu Pengetahuan dan Teknologi didominasi (banyak) oleh keturunan Yahuhdi ( Keturunan Israel) ; maka aneka perubahan cepat yang terjadi pada Bangsa Israel sadar atau tidak sadar menjadi model secara umun terutama di negara Negara maju dan Negara –negara diluar Timur Tengah.
    Berhubung pakaian wanita dengan model tertutup (baju wanita Muslim) adalah pakaian nenek moyang Agama Yahudi, Agama Kristen dan Agama Islam (Bapak Orang percaya yaitu Abraham ), maka saya mengusulkan agar semua orang yang beriman kepada Allah Abraham mencintai Pakaian wanita tertutup ( Baju wanita Muslim). Dan semua wanita dari Agama Abraham harus memiliki paling tidak satu buah Baju wanita Muslim, baju ini wajib dipakai pada saat merayakan Pesta Hari Paskah sedang untuk Agama Yahudi dicari hari yang paling tepat untuk mengenakan baju wanita Muslim ini.
    Seandainya seluruh wanita Agama Abraham sudah secara bersama – sama menyukai Baju waanita Muslim, maka apa bila nanti rombongan Yesus Kristus tentu termasuk Bapak Abraham turun kebumi kita ini, maka dapat dipastikan akan membuat mereka sangat senang dan bahagia. Sebab disamping dapat menunjukkan persatuan dan kerukunan Uamat Agama Abraham, juga akan menjadi semacam nostalgia yang sangat berkesan bagi para Rombongan Surgawi tersebut. Dan akirnya, seandainya kedatangan kedua kalinya Yesus Kristus beserta Rombongan hanya melihat wanita muslim saja yang mengenakan baju tertutup, maka bukan tidak mungkin semua rombongan Surgawi itu akan mencela pakaian wanita yang seksi (seronok) dan memuji pakaian Wanita Muslim.

    1. Sara4 years ago

      Women are not responsible for male sexuality.

      1. Irfan Anwar4 years ago

        I agree with your comment, and related information…

      2. Boo4 years ago

        Seriously, I agree. What is it about men that they refuse to control themselves and be respectful of all women? I believe, when in someone else’s country, one should be respectful of their culture by not drawing outrageous attention to oneself and comply with head covering if need be. However, the underlying message is that women should remain in their place, ten steps behind a man wearing a glad leaf garbage bag over their bodies because the men are animals. Maybe men need to revisit their own behavior and thinking.

        1. Kimbro4 years ago

          Thank you. It saddens me to watch the world. Things have changed but I doubt we (all people without regard to race, gender, age, ability etc) will achieve equality before we destroy our environment and/or one another. I hope I’m WRONG.

    2. Gemini347464 years ago

      With respect of your knowledge…I don’t understand your point or what you mean to say.

    3. Lina4 years ago

      So with men being the lesser creature in what you say (not being able to control himself around women) the women should be punished? Why do the western men control themselves very well then? What makes you so different? Are you weaker? Or is it so that you are controlled by gouvernment and religion as to what to think and do? Is that a good way of life? For me it wouldnt be.

    4. Pascale4 years ago

      It seams that Muslim men are repressed and also obsessed by women ‘s attire. They also have this FOOLISH belief that they can and should dictate what women should wear. Sad. Sad . Sad and absurd and unacceptable.

  65. A Bh4 years ago

    Maybe, for the time being, most muslims are not in favor of the burqa or the hijab, but without international human rights laws in place there is no assurance that that mindset won’t change as religions can be very fickle. Such was the case with Iran: one day the woman were uncovered, and the next day religious law mandated complete cloaking…or else.

    If females are seen only as sexual objects two things happen: 1. either females are hidden from view so that males are not constantly tempted sexually, or 2. females are encouraged to flaunt their bodes sexually in order to provoke the prurient interest of males. It’s two sides of the same coin, and, either way, females lose. These two phenomena are growing today, and that’s very worrisome.

    1. Igor Terrible4 years ago

      Nice to hear some common sense for a change…

  66. A Bh4 years ago

    Interesting, but….what was the point of the survey?

    It doesn’t talk about why the need to cover up women and why NOT the need to cover up men? It doesn’t address the complicated human rights issue the cover ups create: 1. Whether the religious and cultural imposition of the burqua and, or the niqab is, indeed, a violation of human rights for females? 2. Whether muslim females are indoctrinated to believe that they are responsible for the sexual deviance of males? 3. Whether such an indoctrination is, in an of itself, a form of oppression, or abusive psychologically? 4. Whether a female who has been indoctrinated to erase her appearance by cloaking herself has actually freely made that choice? 5. Whether any society–where men and women are considered equal–should incorporate into its norm religious practices that promote the philosophy that women–by their appearance–are responsible for the sexual deviant thoughts of men? 6. Whether modesty actually means the extreme act of completely erasing ones appearance? 7. Whether all females at large are oppressed when forced to witness and thereby accept the erasing of the female form by way of cloaking? These are just SOME of the questions resulting from this issue. Questions ignored by PEW researchers.

    To be sure, oppressive indoctrination comes in many ways, some subtle, and some not so subtle, either by way of study, or, by way of male and female behavior.

    1. JJ4 years ago

      The survey addresses the arab spring and specifically Tunisia. The question of “acceptable” women attire was a minuscule at best in this survey, since it wasn’t even supposed to address that. “Gender relations” chapter consists of 9 pages of which 2 address the clothing of women.

  67. Fahadullah4 years ago

    The Messenger of Allah (Peace be upon Him) said in an authentic tradition:

    “Verily for every religion there is a characteristic, and the characteristic of Islam is Haya`a (modesty, shyness, bashfulness).”

    1. Pascale4 years ago

      I do not care what your God says…he is irrelevant to me SO I will wear what I want to wear .

  68. ghaith4 years ago

    1 – Most Saudi women do not speak English, and therefore statistical inaccurate.
    2 – here you will find the story of niqab and the story of the Prophet Muhammad Pray God be upon him.

    3 – The Story of the Prophet Muhammad Pray God be upon him. You will find the main reason from start to finish.

    Book Name: Sealed Nectar
    Type: PDF

    1. Aguilito4 years ago

      Excellent comment.
      Most Brazilians do not speak English. They do however play football (an English game), and this is “therefore statistical accurate” AND they are organizing the FIFA World Championship this year.
      Hope this helps too.

      1. Saad4 years ago

        I guess the point was not that how can a Buddhist eat Mexican dish in Egypt but it was about the difference between literal translations and inferences in language systems. For example, in some languages borrow lexicography synonyms from other languages and you won’t be able to find as-per-say same definitions. In this regard, Chinese literature due to multiple level of politeness have different terminologies for same English literature words and same goes from Arabic languages. In arab, there are many variants due to different social norms contributing to differences in colloquial understandings.

        There has always been margin of error in cross-cultural survey. No one is demeaning the work of the survey. But one has to be considerate enough to except the cross-cultural language conversion barriers which induce certain margin of error’s in the survey’s.

  69. Brigitte Turkmani4 years ago

    Jedes Land hat seine eigene Kultur. Kulturen soll man nicht ändern.

    1. KiSa4 years ago

      Kulturen kann man nicht ändern. Kulturen verändern sich, und das kann man nicht verhindern.

  70. Martin4 years ago

    I Think it would be intresting to know the difference of opinion between the genders of the voters. If it’s just men or women that participated. Might be a significant difference in the percentages…

    1. Aguilito4 years ago

      The second questions isn’t hard to answer:
      Percentage of Male respondents in Egypt Iraq Lebanon Pakistan Saudi Arabia Tunisia Turkey is 49 53 59 51 50 45 44 respectively.
      Your first question about difference of opinion between the genders of the voters…?
      That’s not in the published (freely available) report.

  71. Adnan4 years ago

    I do not agree with the story and research on Pakistan, In Pakistan in many bigger cities women are really in modern clothes without scarf, also in many universities, they do not use shalvar kaamis, because of force, this the culture of many south Asian people, also in India Hindu women use Shalvaar kaamis which is considered is burqa or scarf in many European countries, in also in this research I point out another mistake. Pakistan is not the most conservative country in the world, In Pakistan there are 200 women politicians in the parliament, Pakistan has currently woman in high rank justice system, Pakistan had twice prim minister woman, secretary of state woman. Afghanistan and other Arab countries, and also African countries have more conservative societies than Pakistan. Somalia etc………

    1. Aguilito4 years ago

      Here we go again:
      “….I do not agree with the story and research on Pakistan….”

      In the period from May to September 2011, in Pakistan 3,523 respondents were asked a variety of questions about
      Gender Relations
      Social Individualism
      Secular Politics
      Form of Government
      People’s Wishes Versus the Shari’a
      National Identity and National Pride
      Concerns with Western Culture and Conspiracy
      Religious Tolerance
      Mosque Attendance
      Likeability of and Attitudes toward Violence against Americans

      And the question about the 6 cards with different hair/face coverings, the questions were:
      -It is acceptable for a man to have more than one wife.
      -A wife must always obey her husband.
      -On the whole, men make better political leaders than women do.
      -A university education is more important for a boy than for a girl.
      -It is up to a woman to dress whichever way she wants
      -When jobs are scarce, men should have more right to a job than women.
      -Which one of these women is dressed most appropriately for public places? Just tell me the number on the card.

      There is NO Research to disagree with!
      The answers were given by the respondents to the survey.
      You can agree or disagree with the answers given by the respondents, but that doesn’t change how they answered, does it?

      1. Saad4 years ago

        In reply to survey conducted in Pakistan:

        This is statistically inferred and on many grounds can be debated with the social context of the survey. I don’t disagree with the statistics of survey but i do not agree with the inferences from tabular charts.

        If the survey was conducted via internet sources then a good result would be some bias in middle liberal class as internet is freely accessible in those areas. And in the similar areas you will see 60% endorsing option #5 and 40% option #6.

        Social norms heavily endorse cultural attributes and groups of people living in those areas. Now if you break down the results from rural areas, i can assure you that the option #5 would be the mean-value with 20% variance on both sides, i.e., #4 and #6. The current results are from the urban-socio environment with a mean-value around option #3.

        I personally believe that any type of results would deviate in regions where religion in republically exercised because there are some social norms are condemned in public but endorsed in private sections.

        Anyhow, the gender bias and social bias always give different opinions about results. I believe its a really good effort to get an insight to the social norms exercised in Pakistan. But it would had been more interesting to see inferences based on gender and socio-cultural context about people taking the survey’s.

  72. Herschel G4 years ago

    May we now see a similar survey of orthdox Jews and Southern Baptists?

  73. Rod Sulik4 years ago

    I find it surprising that Muslim women haven’t risen up and taken control of their own lives. I also find it despicable that Muslim men still impose these outdated morals on the women in their countries. There must be a lot of potential being repressed in those nations.

    1. matin4 years ago

      we have control and we ourselves like to dress like that!

      1. Igor Terrible4 years ago

        Since when did women “have control” in Islam??

        1. 347464 years ago

          I do have control of what I wear and what I do…and I choose not to wear head scarf and I choose to wear it as a respect for elders. God is in our heart and see what we are not what we show or wear.
          If I live in a cold country I will cover myself because is cold and God knows that.
          If I live in hot weather I will not cover extreme my body (I’m a modest wear) or I will be dehydrated and God knows that.
          God make our life simple, is US who make it difficult, is Us who judge people. Is the MAN who try to control woman’s. Woman are punish by the selfish and pervert MAN Brain.
          This is for all man Muslims – We in general should not just look at the woman, woman keep Islam in all senses. Man on the other hand are suppose to be the leader of religion in the house but they wear shorts, and the most modern clothes and gadgets. In USA they have lovers, etc. Islam is not just go to pray on Fridays is practice the love of God with everyone and most to the wife….Go to Disney with temperature of 90 degrees, the woman with burda (cover from head to toe) sweeting, dehydrated close to faint and husband in shorts, t-shirt, sunglasses, Is this good on the eyes of God? If you are one of this type, try to answer.

        2. Pascale4 years ago

          Right on Igor !

        3. ghaith4 years ago

          Since Islam came became women are free, you can read about Islam not to hear and believe anyone.


    2. Rosi4 years ago

      Dear Rod, “potential” can take various forms other than just exposing skin to men.

  74. 日本省4 years ago


    1. Aguilito4 years ago


  75. Rich Goranson4 years ago

    Strange that you deliberately left out the most populous Muslim-majority nation and focused exclusively on the Middle East. That gives the impression that you’re cherry-picking your data.

    1. Aguilito4 years ago

      The original (extensive) survey was in Tunisia.
      Answers to some (but not all) of the 250 questions, were also available from respondents to other surveys in other countries (Egypt Iraq Lebanon Pakistan Saudi-Arabia Turkey).

      title of the report:

      So, knowing the answers to the 250 questions in Tunisia, wouldn’t it be interesting to see how Tunisia , the birth-place of the Arab Spring, compares to (some) other Muslim-majority countries?

      For me the answer is: YES, that would be interesting to see. So I read the report.

      Did they deliberately left out…Oh come off it.

      Would it really be of interest to compare Tunisia’s citizens attitude towards Islam, Christianity, Social Individualism, Secular Politics, Form of Government, People’s Wishes Versus the Shari’a, Concerns with Western Culture and Conspiracy, Religious Tolerance etcetera….with the attitude of Indonesians? Really?

      1. Sean Mitchell4 years ago

        I agree that including Indonesia would not have been very relevant to the study, since it is obviously not just a religious cultural study but also a regional cultural study. For that same reason I would have liked to have seen the results for Iran – in fact, it would have been the most interesting, given the singular nature of that particular Muslim society.

        1. Syed Amir4 years ago

          The heading of the article is “How people in Muslim countries prefer women to dress in public”. The heading is very misleading because only 14% (7 out of 49) of Muslim-majority countries and only 25% of the Muslim population is included in this study.
          The first sentence in the article talks about the “Muslim world”. Conflating the larger Middle-East with the Muslim world is misleading.
          For Pew to spew such inaccuracy adds to the mis-perception of Muslims. An example is the story in the Times of India quoting the Pew article without the the study’s heading or the countries involved.

        2. Sarah3 years ago

          From what I’ve observed, #4 and #5 seem to be predominant in Iran.

  76. Frederick4 years ago

    Perhaps we should ask ourselves if any humans should be able to choose their clothing as they see fit? It is not without precedent regardless of the arab world. As a western citizen it is easy to make this topic an womens rights issue, but then consider your own culture. Long hair for men has been excepted in Europe since ancient times yet none were more shunned during the 60’s for the very same reason.

    The very idea that you base your acceptance of an another human being upon their physical appearance regardless of their hair, clothing or skin colour to me means you have the wrong values. Period.

  77. A. Khan4 years ago

    I am from Pakistan and I can safely say that what is given in this study regarding Pakistani women is totally wrong. Burqa (1) and niqab (3) are worn by some women. The abaya (3) is not worn at all. Hijab (4) is relatively popular but the scarf (5) is the most widely used but this study shows it be at only 8%. And a lot of women don’t cover their hair.

    I don’t know who did the research but what I have stated makes the study highly suspect.

    1. Lahori4 years ago

      A. Khan: There are about 100 million women in Pakistan. You are talking about the 5-6 million that live in Karachi or 2-3 million that live in Lahore. If you take the other 90 million women into account, the above stats are probably accurate.

    2. Aguilito4 years ago

      The question was not “How many women are wearing a Burqa/Niqab or whatever”.
      The question was: “…to choose the woman most appropriately outfitted for a public place”

      And of the 3523 respondents in Pakistan (with a response rate of 83%), 51% Male (and I postulate 49% Female), 3% chose Woman #1.

      That’s the opinion of 3% of the respondents; and 97% of the respondents chose one of the other 5 pictures as “…the woman most appropriately outfitted for a public place”. So What?!

  78. Louise Delaney4 years ago

    Where is the survey about how people prefer MEN to dress in public? This survey is laughable. Of course, Muslim males want the women to be ‘covered’. It is a handy method of male control over females; not unusual in our male dominated religions. It will take Muslim women some time to realize this; unfortunately, not anytime soon.

    1. Aguilito4 years ago

      How fortunate for you that you don’t need a survey.
      You ‘KNOW’ that : “…Of course, Muslim males want the women to be ‘covered’”.

      Brilliant deduction. However, for me (and seeing the extensive survey and the Report also for lots of others), to label an extensive survey as “laughable”, just because you know all the answers, is a bit silly (to say the least).

      The survey deals with subjects like:
      Participation in the Revolution and Perceptions of the Arab Spring
      Perceptions of the Current Regime and What Changed for Better or Worse
      Trust in Political Leaders, Institutions, and Religions
      Voting and Political Parties
      Self-Reported Political Efficacy and Likelihood of Engagement
      National Priorities, Development, and Decadence
      The Subjective Basis of the Rhetorical Power of Religious Activists

      And if you report the results of an extensive survey in Tunisia, it might be very interesting to see how Tunisia compares to other Muslim-majority countries, based on:
      Gender Relations
      Social Individualism
      Secular Politics
      Form of Government
      People’s Wishes Versus the Shari’a
      National Identity and National Pride
      Concerns with Western Culture and Conspiracy
      Religious Tolerance
      Mosque Attendance
      Likeability of and Attitudes toward Violence against Americans

      But for you…. it’s all silly, cause you know the answers!

    2. Pascale4 years ago

      Right on Louise !

  79. Asieh4 years ago

    why Iran is not included in the research? Woman 3 is a traditional muslim woman.

  80. Mark4 years ago

    I would also suggest asking men how do they prefer to see women in the aforementioned countries. Such study may reveal gender implication on society preferences. There is a gap between what women prefer and what they can implement in reality. As an example, we should not forget family rules and hesitations (hidden rule: to keep in touch with parents and relatives forever). Disobeying in this sense raises several difficulties especially for young generation. We in the west side of the world could not easily judge such mentality, therefore, we should deepen our insight and let us understand other people on the other side.

  81. Fazou4 years ago

    I know for sure that Egyptians women and girls in Egypt cover their hair for it gives them more freedom to go out from their houses. And the second reason is their hair is frizzy and they cannot afford to go to a hairdresser every week. It has nothing to do with religion.

    1. Heba Elsheikh4 years ago

      That’s not right .Who told you that? Muslim women and girls ,not only in Egypt but also everywhere,wear clothes to cover their bodies and veils to cover their hair because our religion order us to do that.That’s not because their hair is frizzy and also not because they can’t go to a hairdresser.If you read about our religion before,you wouldn’t say something like that.

    2. Frederick4 years ago

      Just an small idea for you Fazou, perhaps if men did’nt harass them, they could go out however they wanted. Their hair is “frizzy” so they want to cover it? That is the most infantile explanation I have ever heard. You evidently don’t meet many women…

    3. Aguilito4 years ago

      Nothing to do with religion….????
      Yeah, sure

    4. AD4 years ago

      Freedom from whom? The men who would harass them if they had their hair out? If so, does that really mean “more freedom” ?

    5. Pascale4 years ago

      ” women cover their hair because it gives them more freedom “….. How sad !

  82. Rachel Eliasi4 years ago

    although the survey is informative, it is not necessarily insightful and comprehensive since it overlooks the majority of the countries where the majority or major populations are Moslem if not by devotion The least by birth.

    Moreover, carrying such surveys in undemocratic societies, where due to fears from officials or inhibitions by certain cultural and historical norms, education, etc., is NOT reliable.

    last, one could only surmise if the same survey, when anonymously run in IRAN, Afghanistan, India, Indonesia, Central Asian countries, Albania, Mali, Somalia, Sudan, what will really the results be?

    I postulate the result in IRAN will be the most liberals in that almost 100% would opt for the last three categories, woman No. 4 through 6 on the card!

    1. Aguilito4 years ago

      If the question would have been: “What is the most liberal Muslim-majority country in the world” then yes, it could very well be Iran (or not).
      The question however was “how does Tunesia, the birth place of the Arab Spring, compare to (some) Muslim-majority countries”

  83. Cindy Adams4 years ago

    I know that many people are wanting to see the answers of men vs women. I think many people are expecting the women to want more liberal dress and the men to want more restrictive dress. This largely shows a misunderstanding of, at least, Arab culture (so excluding Turkey and Pakistan) where during the fundamentalist revival it was largely women who took on more conservative dress as an expression of their devotion, sometimes initially at least to the consternation of their male relatives and mothers who often teach and enforce a dress code to their daughters. Often it is female voices most loudly shaming other women when it comes to issues such as rape, sexual harassment, and domestic violence.

  84. Lynne4 years ago

    Although I do not like the form of dress hat covers the entire woman and makes her look like a alien from outer space and looks as if it’s hard to breathe and see while wearing it, it is not my business what women in other countries wear. I live in sweat suits in the winter because they are warm and comfortable during the frigid cold in the north, but I don’t imagine women in other countries would find them “fashionable”! Being a woman, I would hope women anywhere are able to choose for themselves what they wear — and that they are not forced to or punished if they do not. (I can remember a time in this country when little Catholic girls were punished for wearing patent leather shoes or too much red–it was considered “sinful” by the church! Stupid!) I think there are many other women’s issues around the world that are far more important than what they wear.

  85. Bill Monza4 years ago

    It’s seems to me that these results are next to useless without knowing the gender of the participants. What would men choose vs/and what would women choose? With this information, we can better understand this aspect of these countries/cultures.

  86. Barbara Ruhlman4 years ago

    This law of how women should dress is beyond belief. It is made up by men who are ignorant and controlling. They don’t want women to be their equals and use the excuse of their scriptures. Women in these countries who speak out are quickly silenced! It is beyond sickening. These men are to put it mildly “bullies” who are deadly.

    1. Frederick4 years ago

      Dear Barbara,

      I respect your sentiment but it is a flawed one, repression in this manner has always existed wether it has been directed toward any women or men for that matter. We have ourselves to blame, we have done the same for eternity in our society… It is just another form of suppression, but it is not happening in the intimate world of your own right now.. It is the “suppression” regardless of the victim that you should fight. Or fight for tolerance, period.

      Oh, you forgot to tell us who “they” are….

      1. Aguilito4 years ago

        Actually she did tell who “they” were:
        “… It is made up by men who are ignorant and controlling. They don’t want women to be their equals….”

        So “they”= men who are ignorant and controlling

    2. M. Rony4 years ago

      Your reply is hardly anything other than the opinion of an ignorant woman that sees the world only through the smallest lens of understanding possible. Hijab(modesty) is a concept that is equally administered by Islamic scriptures to both genders. As a male, I am also required to dress in loose fitting clothes that do not expose the shape of my body. A male Muslim that wears tight fitting clothes, or ones that expose too much skin, is equally shamed and considered immodest.

      Please stop and think about what you consider freedom. Western ideals of female beauty has had more ill effects on women’s health and psychological well being than any eastern ideals ever had. Plastic surgery, breast augmentation, rhinoplasty, dieting pills, anorexia, and countless other effects are suggestive of the ill effects of the lack of modesty rampant in western society. Of course this disease has also started to spread in almost every corner of the world.

      1. Aguilito4 years ago

        Your reply is hardly anything other than the opinion of an ignorant man that sees the world only through the smallest lens of understanding possible.
        Somewhere in the Quran it says: “Believers, take neither Jews nor Christians for your friends.” (Surah 5:51)
        and “Men are tempted [in this life] by the lure of women…far better is the return of God. Say: ‘Shall I tell you of better things than these, with which the righteous shall be rewarded by their Lord? Theirs shall be gardens watered by running streams, where they shall dwell for ever: wives of perfect chastity…” (Surah 3:14, 15)
        I’m not an ignorant woman (sorry about that), just an ignorant man. So enlighten me: Does it actually say in the Quran: “As a male, you are also required to dress in loose fitting clothes that do not expose the shape of your body”

      2. angie4 years ago

        A woman can be modest in her own way of dressing, she does not need to go to extremes of covering her face. Western ideals etc. is something that you are nowadays exposed to whether you cover or not, because the pressure is out there. That’s up to you to become strong in the face of these ideals.
        Passing a law (in countries, I am not judging the religion) or “preference” that woman should dress in a certain way because its haram to expose your hair or face? That is objectifying women and making them feel insecure, making them feel the need to cover. I would actually be interested in reading how muslim women have internalized this belief that they need to cover to be modest, a very male-dominant idea that has gotten way out of hand.

  87. Abu-Naime Messaoud-Jebara4 years ago

    no comments

  88. Rusl4 years ago

    Iam a muslim girl and I have a one massage( just keep focusing on women ) …!!!!!

    Is this a big deal to discuss about what women should wear, there are many important things rather than clothings,
    am not against hijab because it exist in islam as well as in christian religion as many women wear it before they go to the churge. But with my respect its silly study, men only concern about what women should wear or do . Every women has a brain and she know what to wear according to her relgion or whatever her convincements . There are many muslims dont wear hijab. THERE ARE A BIG MISUNDERSTANDING TO ISLAM RELIGION UNFORTUNATELY.Islam never force women to wear certain clothings as some men do .

    1. Scholar4 years ago

      You made excellent points and I completely agree!

      I’m a Western man and it’s our younger generation that has started to grow to understand little by little that women too, like men are both thinking and feeling human beings who should all be treated with respect.

      The tolerance for other cultures amongst young adults seem to be in the rise as well.
      The older generations still think sometimes that women and non-white people are somehow less, which is just complete lies to divide and conquer.

      I think it’s highly unfortunate that Islam has been made a scapegoat to mask the evils of imperialism the biggest nations of the West still practice.

      Every educated person knows most Muslims are peaceful and good people and we both dislike our corrupted leaders.

      People are intentionally driven to superficial thinking so power can be held over the ignorant masses. Otherwise there would be no war if people would actually know more about each other and themselves on a deeper level.

      We’ll get there!
      Thanks to our ability to exchange views just like this.
      God/Allah/Buddha/Krishna/Science bless the internet, lol!

  89. scepticacademic4 years ago

    Interesting data but strange that the report does not include the world’s most populous Muslim country (Indonesia).

    In fact, it’s a rather odd mix of countries. Lebanon is a diverse country with a significant non-Muslim population. Pakistan is certainly not part of the middle east and north africa ‘region’.

    I’d also have been interested to see some data for Nigeria, a country with a large and rapidly growing population and a big Christian/Muslim split. And Muslim central asia.

    1. Noah4 years ago

      If you look at the source under the data, you’ll see that the purpose of the study was just to compare Tunisia (where the Arab Spring began) to other countries in the Middle East region.

      1. Yul4 years ago

        Is Pakistan part of the ME? let alone an Arab country?
        Is Turkey part of the Middle East or an asian country ?

        1. Aguilito4 years ago

          NO, NO, YES, NO

  90. hgdk4 years ago

    I want to know how they chose their sample frame. I understand that they asked only men, but, how did they choose these men? Were they based on social class standing? For instance, in Egypt, what is considered to be appropriate attire for women differs in social classes. What were the questions used in this survey? What is the tool of measurement? This is so vague… Also, I HIGHLY doubt that Saudi Arabia scored higher than in Egypt in the poll “Should Women Be Able To Choose Their Own Clothing”.

    1. Randy4 years ago

      The survey included men and women about evenly split. Click the link to read the actual study, and you can answer your questions.

    2. Scholar4 years ago

      I was thinking the same things…

      How can Saudi-Arabia be so strict on Hijab, but at the same time 47% agree that women should wear whatever they want? It makes no sense.

      Statistics are always highly unreliable because the parameters to make them can be far fetched and delusional and conclusions made based on very slim views on the actual reality.

      1. khadijah4 years ago

        Well the word choice is the key. To a saudi I am sure they take a choice in the context of the law. The law says saudi women must wear Abaya and Shayla. So the choice is beyond the law. Not a choice in the western sense of do whatever you want.Although to be fair, it is true in the west as well, when people say they have a choice to be with who they want to for instance, exept that is only within the law (I.e no animal, no 16 year olds, no bigamy. So choice doesnt mean absolute choice. And it could be argued in a country like KSA where the laws are stricter in the sense of dress, it is much easier to approve of a womans choice. Than in Egypt where the laws are more lenient. Then again Egypt also ranked lower than Saudi Arabia when it comes to treatment of women, in general. We are comparing a dress code/ women not being allowed to drive to FGM and gang rape on the streets.

    3. Aguilito4 years ago

      If almost ALL women in the Saudi Arabian survey answered YES and almost ALL men answered NO, than 47% is not so doubtful!

      Saudi Arabia data: 2005 respondents, 50% Male

  91. Bichu4 years ago



  92. Claire4 years ago

    Would be very interested to see the gender breakdown for the percentage who believe the woman should be able to choose? The fact that it is around the 50% mark in many countries suggests to me that maybe the women think they should be allowed to chose and the men don’t? I may be way out of line here but it is an interesting idea!

    1. Aguilito4 years ago

      If you’re interested in the gender breakdown, how about the gender breakdown for the answers to some of the other questions in the survey:
      -It is acceptable for a man to have more than one wife.
      -A wife must always obey her husband.
      -On the whole, men make better political leaders than women do.
      -A university education is more important for a boy than for a girl.
      -It is up to a woman to dress whichever way she wants
      -When jobs are scarce, men should have more right to a job than women.
      -Which one of these women is dressed most appropriately for public places? Just tell me the number on the card.

      The owners of the survey data obviously know the gender breakdown. It’s however not available in the ‘for free’ published report.

  93. Kate Lindsay4 years ago

    We’re currently in the Abu Dhabi, UAE visiting our son and his family. During a tour of the a mosque in Dubai, our guide told us it was the woman’s and her family choice as to the form of attire worn. Thanks for sharing this article with the rest of us.

  94. may azzam4 years ago

    intersting research

  95. Jay4 years ago

    Why were Indonesia, Malaysia, and other Muslim countries not included? Indonesia has the LARGEST Muslim population in the Muslim world. This study is highly biased, as only one image of a woman without her hair and ears covered places bias on the answers given. I’d also like to know more about who was polled for the study – I.e. Both men and women? Age groups? From urban or rural areas? There must be a more accurate and more neutral and well thought-out study somewhere..

  96. Dave Cannon4 years ago

    I bet the results are very sensitive to region. Wonder how they accounted for that.

  97. Douglas Anderson4 years ago

    So they got opinion of men and women? Was the proportion of men and women equal? Or was it weighted in favour of men especially considering that the men would probably have answered and prevented their wives/daughters from doing so?

    Personally I think this survey is bollocks until these questions are addressed.

    1. Aguilito4 years ago

      You could of course just look at the report (page 16), but that would probably be too …..(what?)

  98. Asma4 years ago

    Having been to Pakistan in the last year, I know that the majority of women wear #4 and #5 in the Karachi and the large cities, so I don’t know accurate this is.

    1. Lahori4 years ago

      Karachi has a population of about 10 million; Lahore has a population of 6 million. Pakistan has a population of almost 200 million. You are talking about a very small minority, not the majority.

  99. Mustafa Adel Ali4 years ago

    Why not leave everyone to his own liberty?! no one should force the other on how to dress.

  100. Karen Taylor4 years ago

    And you asked Christians …about muslimahs…..this is flawed and stupid

    1. Ted4 years ago

      Asking someone to state their religion before offering their opinion is flawed and stupid!

    2. bob4 years ago

      “conducted in seven Muslim-majority countries (Tunisia, Egypt, Iraq, Lebanon, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia and Turkey)” Where did it say they asked Christians?

      1. Aguilito4 years ago

        They happen to ask approximately 3,000 respondents to answer questions. Among the questions also Gender/Age/Religion/Employment status/Social class etcetera.

        In Egypt/Lebanon/Iraq/Pakistan “Christian” was the answer by 14%,0.4%,27% and 1% of the respondents respectively.

        The answer to your question: “Where did it say they asked Christians” is: page 16 of the report “Demographic Characteristics of Sampled Survey Respondents”

    3. DdR4 years ago

      If you read the article, no, they didn’t. The question didn’t address either the relgion of the women nor of the respondent. This was about “what women should wear in public” Not Christian Women, Not Muslim women, but simply Women.

      1. Aguilito4 years ago

        Actually they did:

        They happen to ask approximately 3,000 respondents to answer questions. Among the questions also Gender/Age/Religion/Employment status/Social class etcetera.

        In Egypt/Lebanon/Iraq/Pakistan “Christian” was the answer by 14%,0.4%,27% and 1% of the respondents respectively.

        The answer to your question: “Where did it say they asked Christians” is: page 16 of the report “Demographic Characteristics of Sampled Survey Respondents”

  101. David4 years ago

    Interesting (misleading) graphic. There are more than 45+ islamic controlled countries and more than 50+ islamic states, accounting for 800 million muslims. (about 1.1b in the world) Afganistan(18m), Bangladesh(100m), Iran(48m), Algeria(22m) Malaysia(14m), Indonesia(161m), the Maldives(12m)…I could go on. Go To arabicpaper.tripod.com/country.html
    This set of countries (7) represents 242M of the 1.1B muslims or less than 0.024% of the total. Assume 50% of these are female or 0.012%. How many women were asked if they would prefer to be dressed in this or that fashion?
    The analysis is gender bias and insufficient in statistical terms.

    1. Paul4 years ago

      David, sorry, back to school. 242M of 1.1B is 22%, not 0.024%

    2. Mister4 years ago

      Maybe I misunderstand, but 242,000,000 (242 Million) is ~24% of 1,100,000,000 (1.1 Billion).

    3. Dylan4 years ago

      David, maybe you should find a better source. “Upper Volta” and “Dahomey” don’t exist anymore. Also, Maldives has a population of 338,000; that’s less than 3% of what you and your source claim it to be.

  102. Sudhakaran P.P.4 years ago

    It is not coincidental that Tunisia, Lebanon and Turkey prefer to give more freedom to women to choose the way they would want to dress. They lead the predominantly Muslim majority countries preferring lesser cover for the female figure.
    Left to themselves, what women would intuitively prefer might not be hard to guess, But why? To make themselves physically more attractive to the other gender?
    That the human males, generally physically stronger, prefer to own and control their females, as immediate mates (spouses) and as prospective mates of other males (daughters) is the common notion. But, who has the last laugh? If women are ordained by nature to be owned and controlled, why should they try to be attractive? What difference will it make, whether the moth is beautiful or ugly, if it is only to be consumed by the flame! Or, are they trying to outwit other women in becoming a more attractive property or slave?

  103. Iskandar4 years ago

    The link in the article points to more details on the survey. With regards to the results on womens dress code, I find the survey “flawed” a little as since the question is gender specific, women may have entirely different attitude about it to men. So there should be two separate tables, one for mens view and one for womens views on the matter.

  104. Gemma Seymour4 years ago

    I want to know how the women in question feel about this, not how their society as a whole views what is appropriate for them. I want to know why the responses of the women were not reported and compared to the responses of the men. I want to know why the reportage of this part of the survey is not leading with the voices of the women themselves, why this issue is being treated in such a dry academic fashion as if it does not have real consequences for the lives of real women.

    1. Haroon4 years ago

      I will say, The said survey is only related to Muslim men opinion not women.

    2. doubleplusgood4 years ago

      No they said the researchers didn’t publish the results by gender. The poll was conducted on men and women.
      Many women cover themselves due to their religious beliefs, not because men force them to. I live in Dubai and have a few friends who don’t want their wives to cover up because it makes life more difficult. However their wives insist on covering their hair (as pic #5)! I personally find it very strange for a person to choose that but it is their choice at the end of the day.

    3. یکدو سهچهارپنج4 years ago

      why do you doubt if a woman like to wear Hijab herself! I’m a woman that I like to wear as picture 1 but i wear as 4.

  105. sa4 years ago

    Sorry but since when is Lebanon a Muslim country?

    I downloaded the complete study ->
    There are other more interesting survey questions that could have been headlined.
    On the other hand, there are questions which are a bit weak in their formulation.

    1. Frank4 years ago

      Lebanon is more Muslim than Christian. Though precise figures are difficult to obtain, responsible estimates are that Muslims (Sunni, Shi’a, and various splinter groups) account for 50 to 60 percent of the population, with the Druze in the 5-to-10 range and the various Christian groups making up the rest. While most Lebanese outside Lebanon are Christian, the majority of Lebanese within Lebanon are Muslim.

      1. Kind4 years ago

        Frank your reply is very funny, so why not include Belgium in this study? Does it mean that Belgium is a muslim country just because many immigrants live their? and soon England and sooner France?

        Lebanon is NOT a muslim country and will never BE!

    2. N K4 years ago

      Lebanon is a Muslim country. It is a Christian country as well. Constitutionally, it is neither, but such legalities were not a criteria, apparently.
      That said, I wonder if there is a relationship between the preferred choice and the degree of education/ literacy, of women in particular, and the population in general.
      Also, the study is about preferences. Any relation to what is actually worn? As in I like a grey sweater, but I wear a red one for convenience…

  106. jen4 years ago

    I can’t believe how many of you fail at internet.

    There is clearly a hyper link that says under the graph ‘recent survey’ – click it – it will lead you to 135 pages of the survey for details.

  107. The Passenger4 years ago

    can any one tell me why the percentage is in Tunisia and Iraq 101% !!!! Egypt, Lebanon and Turkey 99% !!! never referring to the calculations of MEDIAN !!

    If this is a publication of UNIVERSITY OF MICHIGAN, I shall be a Professor in high school statistics there !!

    1. Sam4 years ago

      I assume you’re trolling, but in case anyone (children, I assume/hope) can’t figure this out: They’re reporting percentages in whole numbers, right? This means they are rounding. If they had, for instance, two answers of 49.5% and 50.5%, this adds up to 100%. If you round, you would have 50% + 51%.

  108. Edwards El4 years ago

    how did the answers divide up depending on the sex and the age of the respondents?

  109. Sandra Jones+Ireland4 years ago

    How many of the respondents were female?
    How many of the respondents were male?

    How many were ages 13-50 yrs old?
    How many of these women work in the public business?
    How many were educated: grades 1 through University?

    How many are orthodox practitioners of the orthodox faith?
    How many are non practitioners of any faith?

    And WHY is hair coverage important to both males and females?
    Is it tradition?
    Is it mandated by Men?
    Is it mandated by women?
    Is it traditional custom?
    Do men/woman believe that men will automaticlly be sexually aroused if the hair/face, eyes are uncovered?

    Tradtition or law?

    I didn’t notice any of those issues addressed.

    1. craig4 years ago

      All you need to do is click on the link below the first chart and it will take you to the whole study with all the information.

      1. Gemma Seymour4 years ago

        Which you will find is completely useless, as the data is not presented in a way that allows us to see the responses of the women alone. Nice try, no soup for you.

        1. Aguilito4 years ago

          An comprehensive report on an extensive survey. And completely useless because it doesn’t answer your questions?
          There are 250 questions in the Tunisian survey. That is the birth place of the Arab Spring. Is Tunisia so much different from other Muslim-majority countries? How do they feel about the army, about democray, about religion, about education, about religious parties, religious leaders, about shari’a etcetera, etcetera.

          But these answers are completely useless????? Because you want to know why women will automatically be sexually aroused when men don’t cover their hair?
          Some of Sandra’s questions are answered in the report:
          How many of the respondents were female? It doesn’t say. It does however give you the data for Male respondents: in Egypt Iraq Lebanon Pakistan Saudi-Arabia Tunisia Turkey, the answer is 49 53 59 51 50 45 44 percent respectively.
          Sample size in those countries: 3496 3000 3034 3523 2005 3066 3019
          Why do you need to know how many? But knowing the percentage and the sample size should give you an idea about how many males. I trust you’ll be able to subtract the number of males from the sample size to arrive at the (for you) most important answer: how many were female.
          Obviously this is under the assumption that only Male & Female respondents were interviewed.

          How many of the respondents were male?…Yeah, sure

    2. MIke4 years ago

      Good questions Sandra!

    3. JJ4 years ago

      See page 15 “DATA AND METHODS” section provides a table that addresses these.

      Male and female responses weren’t separated, since that hardly was the purpose of the survey named: “FINAL REPORT, THE BIRTHPLACE OF THE ARAB SPRING: VALUES AND PERCEPTIONS OF THE TUNISIAN PUBLIC IN A COMPARATIVE PERSPECTIVE”

    4. ghaith4 years ago

      Read the book of Islam Sealed Nectar

  110. sarah4 years ago

    did they survey men or women ?????

  111. Lenore4 years ago

    I was disappointed in this story. If you give someone a lineup from most to least conservative, they will tend to drift toward the middle as a safely moderate position and to perceive the ends equally extreme. Or were these photos handed out in random order, individually, for people to select?

  112. coffeebot4 years ago

    Every time I read a face-off between muslims and those critical, I laugh heartily. Mostly, I’m grateful I live in a time and place where nobody dictates my attire and I sympathize with powerless people, especially women.

    The comments are funny because they’re extreme. Can’t fault anyone who hasn’t lived in Lebanon for not knowing that despite Arabic as the official language, it is the most religiously diverse nation in the Middle East. Flaws aside (Lebanon is not an Muslim country) the survey reveals nuances previously unrecognized. Thank you, Jacob.

    Every non-Western country wrestles with Westernization (not Americanization.) This isn’t about East vs West. It’s about understanding.

    Nudity is overrated and if it brings me ‘down’ to the level of animals, then MEOW. Trust me, if you go to a nudist camp for a few days, even a few hours, you’ll be desensitized. Being nude will not change your modesty, privacy, or morality. Replace any of those words with “dignity.” Because in humanism, dignity depends on those three. They are not proprietary to any religion and they can only be surrendered by self-will.

    I’d like to see Indonesia, perhaps even Malaysia in the next research.

  113. Jaydee Hanson4 years ago

    Do you have data for Indonesia, the country with the largest Muslim population?

    1. Aguilito4 years ago

      Excellent question:
      A recent survey from the University of Michigan’s Institute for Social Research conducted in seven Muslim-majority countries (Tunisia, Egypt, Iraq, Lebanon, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia and Turkey)….
      Indonesia was NOT included in the survey, so ….”Do you have data for Indonesia, the country with the largest Muslim population?” Duuh

  114. Alice F. Dotterrer4 years ago

    “prefer women to dress in public” Good article but headline misleading. Writers today
    are rather careless with syntax. Perhaps: ” to be dressed”. Picture brought to mind
    would be different.

    1. Anna4 years ago

      There are different codes for dressing in public and in private. In this case, asking about how they prefer women to be dressed in public is appropriate because at home it could be completely different.

      At home, with family, Muslim women can leave their hair uncovered. They only need to cover from neck to knees when with close kin. According to the Qur’an, in public women are supposed to cover everything except face, hands, and feet. missionislam.com/family/hijab.htm

      1. Gemma Seymour4 years ago

        You missed the point “to dress” evokes the imagine of donning attire, which obviously is not generally done in public. Although, to be honest, “to be dressed” could evoke a similar image, with the only difference that of having another person dress oneself. Still, it is a construction that more easily lends itself to conveying the idea of the sort of clothing one would be wearing, rather than the manner in which one might don it.

  115. crama4 years ago

    They should have asked the same question in the US or Canada as reference point.

    1. jen4 years ago

      The study is clearly about what Majority Muslim countries prefer.
      Using north America as a reference point for what purpose?

      1. Gerry Gentile4 years ago

        I suspect that crama’s point is that we in the West tend to look at “those barbaric Muslims and their oppression of women” and forget that we have our own dress codes. Dress codes which are informed by our own moral and social values.

  116. Fathi Bhoury4 years ago

    J’ai des doutes concernant ce sondage particulièrement concernant la Tunisie. En effet, le choix de la femme tunisienne pour le voile à 57% est inimaginable car nous ne le percevons pas du tout en Tunisie. De plus ceci vient en contradiction avec le fait que 56% des tunisiennes choisis elle même ses habits selon toujours ce même sondage

  117. Anita Clouser4 years ago

    Other important questions would be the gender split of the respondents, age of the respondents and education of the respondents.

  118. ANTIVICTORIA4 years ago

    Where is the methodology?? If this is based on the Tunisian study- who ARE the 3,000 people sampled? All men? Half men?
    And is the study going by Tunisians views of how Pakistanis view dress?

    Since when was Pakistan part of the Arab Spring?

    And why are the questions so abhorrently skewed?

    What a person perceives as societal norms for “appropriate” attire- may differ wildly from what standards they use for themselves.

    I know many Turkish women who never wear hijab, but would have voted in the middle because of the wording.

    Another of the same deadend non-informative projections by PEW onto the Muslim world.

    When it comes to Muslims, terrorism and head scarves are their only topic.

    1. Gemma Seymour4 years ago

      Yes, these questions are left without answers? Were the women who responded allowed to do so anonymously, without the scrutiny of men, who might give them reason to fear reprisal of answers are not up to their standards?

    2. JJ4 years ago


      Page 15 “Data and methods” and page 95 “APPENDIX A TUNISIA SURVEY QUESTIONNAIRE”

  119. Rana4 years ago

    This is rubbish. They have missed a number of LARGELY populated muslim countries i.e Indonesia, Bangladesh, India. I myself am Bengali Indian and I can testify no one gives a damn what women wear in Bangladesh. It’s probably one of the most secular muslim countries around, corruption and scandal aside. The countries listed above that aren’t or haven’t recently been upheaved by civil war and radicalists are unsurprisingly more open minded about the issue

    1. JJ4 years ago

      The survey was not about attire of muslim female, but about the value climate of Tunisia with comparison to some muslim majority countries. In which the view on appropriate attire was one indicator.

    2. Aguilito4 years ago

      “…This is rubbish. They have missed a number of LARGELY populated muslim countries i.e Indonesia, Bangladesh, India…”
      As a Bengali Indian you also may have noticed that India is not a muslim country. And I doubt that the initiators of the survey “missed” a number of countries.

  120. Eric4 years ago

    Imam interested if female and male responders answer differently.

    1. Gemma Seymour4 years ago

      Yes, I bet the imam would be interested in that. I am interested in that very same thing. 😉

  121. Sirous4 years ago

    درود . انسان ازاد خلق شده و هر نوع اجبارى براى حجاب به اسم دين مردود است . بدرود

  122. Mohammad4 years ago

    5 is 100% Iranian!

    1. womenright4 years ago

      6 if there is right to choose.

  123. Omar4 years ago

    Since when tunisia and Pakistan are in the Middle east? I would like to know how this study was conducted? Methodes, samples, questions …can you be more clear about this details thanks.

    1. Andrew T. Ha4 years ago

      The study doesn’t mention “Middle East”. The study specifies “Muslim-majority countries”.

      For how the study was conducted, look at the source and try to find out.

      1. ANTIVICTORIA4 years ago

        He’s responding to the Washington Post article which DOES state Middle East.

        The source leads to one study of Tunisia only.

    2. Ziemo4 years ago

      Muslim countries not Middle east

      1. coffeebot4 years ago


  124. Teresa4 years ago

    This study might be more complete if African nations and Indonesia were included where Islam is practiced in great numbers. Please see if this information can be added to the study.

    1. zjm5554 years ago

      Of the 7 countries sampled, two of them are African nations…

    2. jen4 years ago

      yes, you got the internet right, Leave a comment on a new site asking them to do additional research for you.

  125. ziad4 years ago

    An important issue in the Muslim world yet the survey done by Western university!!!
    theMuslim world more important problems with their dictators deported by the west ,security economic coreption. It is the least of their concerns what the women should wear.

    1. Brisbane4 years ago

      …or perhaps the culture that tolerates men dictating what woman should wear is a culture that tolerates dictators. The issue is not that far removed from the “larger” issues the regions face me thinks…

    2. Gemma Seymour4 years ago

      It is the least of whose concerns? The men? The women themselves? Somehow, I suspect the former. It is easy for men to worry about who runs the government and how when they do not face sanction in their own household and in the street in whcih they live, for failing to cover enough of their faces.

  126. Manar4 years ago

    Pictures are misleading, results are skewed. look at the pictures, for example by putting a picture of an old somewhat unhappy lady #3 and a young smiling one in #4 you have already influenced the subjects.

  127. Passer-by4 years ago

    I thought this article was going to be a bit more interesting and teach us something that we do not already know i.e. differences between the views of women and men in these countries on this topic; views of urban dwellers vs. people from the countryside; views of young vs. old; background information on each country relating to this topic; the rationale for choosing these countries and not others, etc…
    There is no real analysis! So much missing information and perspective! What exactly do the results mean for the rights of women in these countries (which I am assuming is what you are trying to allude to here)? Superficial surveys just create drama, well researched and reasoned surveys create constructive discussions…

  128. ahmed tharwat4 years ago

    … no such thing as arab or muslim world, and no such thing as one public, .. ignoring history, culture and religion …, assuming that head-cover is a symbol of oppression …
    how about a study in the so called west, how people feel about women covering their cleavages..!!,,,

    1. Robert Gluzman4 years ago

      I see that you feel that we are down grading your religion or culture too much but you are now doing the same. I am Jewish and raised a bit old school and religiously so I do not support women walking around looking like hoes and I dont really have problems with hijab because I respect the ideas behind it, but it should be the woman choice, I read the Quran it doesnt force women to put them on. I can respect anyways the woman without the cover and so can many men, and just because they dont wear it it doesn’t mean they want to have sex with everybody all of a sudden.

  129. joe4 years ago

    what I find curiously missing is any kind of mention as to *why Muslim women are required to cover themselves in the first place*.

    what would be the harm in talking about how Sharia law is implemented in such countries, so as to create an atmosphere of fear in which women are required to live?

    What would be the harm in discussing, or even conducting a study, into why Muslim MEN are not held responsible for their actions, and are not taught to control their urges? What I mean by that is, under Sharia law if a woman is NOT wearing a hijab, and a man sees her body and becomes aroused–guess who’s a “sinner”? THE WOMAN. If that man decides he’s so aroused that he rapes the woman–guess who’s the sinner AND a “whore”? THE WOMAN. in Saudi Arabia, if a woman gets raped, she usually then gets either jail time or public lashings b/c she “went out of her house without a husband/male family member”

    that is WHY women in such countries cover themselves. that is also why I personally have absolutely no respect for Islam. religion has no rights, people do.

    1. Muhtashim Rafiq Chowdhury4 years ago

      There are indeed laws for both parties. Women got to cover themselves and men got to lower their gaze. The problem isn’t with the religion but with the society, the male-dominated one.

    2. ANTIVICTORIA4 years ago

      Why is it always the least knowledgeable and misinformed who try to tell Muslim women why they dress the way they do.

      And the only time I ever see anyone calling us whores, is by self righteous non-Muslim men.

  130. Niina4 years ago

    Interesting, why you people consider “Veil” is ONLY “MUSLIM’s” tag?? can anyone show me “Mary” without this kind of veil, almost shown in no. 3 ??? Funny thing is that all NUNs representing category 4 of this survey. Now clear me veil is Muslim’s tag or Christans also fall in. or if not than why Mary always cover her head or why nuns cover their head and ears?
    It simply indicates leave the women on her ow choice and never tag anything to any religion. world is full of Hippocrates.

    1. Mike The Great III4 years ago

      Preach it sista!!!

    2. Naya Alrawashdeh4 years ago

      Well, it’s really only because Muslim women seemingly have no choice on covering up when it comes to being compared to other religions. Nuns have the choice to become nuns and wear the head veil. Mary is only depicted as such in statues and drawings to fit in with societies perception of her being a virgin and pure. So, you see it’s just the sort of extremism behind it and how it is already chosen for Muslim women to dress as such.

    3. CaliforniaGirl4 years ago

      The comparison to Christian nuns is not valid. Nuns are a very, very small percentage of the female population and choose to adhere to much stricter rules when they decide to become a nun. The overwhelming majority of Christian women (in western nations) wear nothing on their heads, exception for fashion or cold weather. Whether this survey reflects reality or not, the difference is very clear: in most Muslim countries, ALL women are expected to wear head coverings of some kind.

      1. coffeebot4 years ago

        perhaps all Saudi women are nuns

      2. PaulD4 years ago

        The interesting thing, I think, is that Christianity, as well as Islam, has lots to say about the sinfulness of lust and of the importance of modesty, yet Western cultures have been emphasizing the female figure and showing lots of skin for hundreds of years! It seems to me that conservative Islam is even more conservative than Old Testament Israel; how could the writers of Scripture say that Rachel or Sarah was “beautiful of form and face” if she were completely covered up? But I think it is not unreasonable to claim that modern-day Muslims are closer to the biblical standard for women’s dress than are America and Europe.

      3. Inam Muhammad Taj4 years ago

        There are two scenarios:
        1. Wearing clothes according to desires.
        2. Wearing clothes according to the order of Creator (God).
        So if women follows her religion and cover her then there shouldn’t be any objection as many women who don’t follow chose not to cover! In my opinion, women should not be forced to wear what they don’t want to wear. Similarly women cannot be criticized or objected for covering herself, if she wants to cover herself.

    4. Pascale4 years ago

      Mary is part of a 2.000 year old story. Every women then was wearing a veil. Nuns are a dying breed because people in the west do not believe in fairy tales anymore. When will Muslims start to think about why they believe in what they beleive (!) and start thinking by themselves ? The information is there for the taking.

  131. Ali S.4 years ago

    I would like to know the sampling strategy for this poll ’cause those numbers for Pakistan don’t correspond particularly well with how I’d imagine the situation on the ground to be. If the sample was indeed representative, then Pakistan is quite possibly the most hypocritical nation in the world.

  132. CES4 years ago

    I think it should be noted that the study wishes to track the changing values in countries encompassed by the Arab Spring. It’s right there in the title: “The Birthplace of the Arab Spring: Values and Perceptions of the Tunisian Public in a Comparative Perspective.” Not specifically the Muslim world and Muslim countries, but Tunisia and it’s surroundings as Arab Spring countries.

    The wording on this article can be a bit misleading as to the actual focus, but to all of you reading here, actually reading the actual report before you comment could save you from a lot of misconceptions.

    That said, I do wish the report would include more data regarding the genders and the age of the respondents, since the data could yield more interesting data on how different the views are between men and women, as well as between the older generation and the younger generation. You would think that in relation to the hijab question above, men and women would probably have differing views.

    1. Nikki4 years ago

      There was no Arab Spring in Pakistan. It is just an analysis of countries with “Muslim” populations.

      1. Aguilito4 years ago

        No Arab Spring in Pakistan?….: It’s not an Arab country!
        (Ethnic groups: Punjabi 44.68%, Pashtun (Pathan) 15.42%, Sindhi 14.1%, Sariaki 8.38%, Muhajirs 7.57%, Balochi 3.57%, other 6.28%)

  133. Voice Reason4 years ago

    I can’t believe money and time was actually spent on this survey.

    1. Yul4 years ago

      This is the period to bash Muslims for some organizations- in a decade we wonder who may be on that hit list . Remember how the Japanese or Germans or Vietcongs were depicted in movies and later TV shows.

      May be if thigs do not work well with the BRIC countries, we will see a survey on Indian women wearing the Sari , or the Russians wearing their Babushka or whatever will be de rigeur apart from the indigenous people of the Amazon going topless

  134. Curious4 years ago

    I wish Iran was included in this poll. I would be really interested to see what Iranians think of this issue.

  135. Saly Teb4 years ago

    Hi 🙂

    I am from Tunisia and ! it’s not the truth at all O.o How do you get this result ????

  136. Prentice Reid4 years ago

    Pew purposely concealed the genders of the respondents in order to yet again leave people with the idea that it’s probably men-only who impose these codes of dress. Also why was there no survey on how the people felt men should dress and whether they should be able to decide themselves how they dress? Men in Muslim countries also dress conservatively. Very disappointing.

  137. Swifty4 years ago

    This is extremely inaccurate. it doesnt even tell you what group they interviewed or how many

    1. Kirsten4 years ago

      Click the “source” under the chart for the whole paper (as opposed to this summary), participant demographics are explained.

  138. Lebanon4 years ago

    1. Lebanon is not a l’islam country
    2. The research is base on what?
    3. Make sûre to have enoigj knowldge i. Ordre to do an accourante research

    1. Ahmad4 years ago

      They later on said “Muslim-majority countries,” Lebanon is a Muslim-majority country.

      1. Niels Georg Bach Christensen4 years ago

        Ahmad, just to say I like your laconic answer. The problem seems to be that the article isn’t representative for the interesting survey.

  139. Americana4 years ago

    Just like in Muslim counties, there are many different cultural norms for dress in the US. Not all women run around ‘naked like animals’. But I was amused by those comments. 🙂
    I live in Egypt at the moment and have seen women dressed so many different ways and what I’ve found is the veil doesn’t necessarily make a woman modest. I often see veiled ladies dressed quite stylishly in tight fitting jeans and stilletos. In fact, even with my hair showing I can assure you Egyptian men are not more ‘temped’ by me than the made up faces and sexy styles of some veiled Cairenes.
    I’m not speaking against these women. I’m just questioning people definition of modesty.

  140. Joe4 years ago

    This is drastically amateur … Hilarious how they put Egypt though, totally untrue!

  141. flawed4 years ago

    How large was the group of “people” that were surveyed? Were they men? were they women? were they Muslim? were they Christian? Were they Atheists? I’m not convinced this is a reliable survey… or an accurate depiction of the situation in those countries.

    “Should women be allowed to choose her own clothing”? Who are you posing this question to?? I am in shock that someone actually came up with that question..

    1. ME4 years ago


      It tell you their sample set on page 130.

      1. ANTIVICTORIA4 years ago

        There’s no breakdown at all.
        It only tells the governates in Tunisia where this study was done.
        No other kind of information, and of course- only for the Tunisian study.

  142. Tootous Shabka4 years ago

    I want to know who they interviewed to get those results cause I don’t think Egypt is right at least from what I’ve seen women wearing in Egypt, both in villages and cities. I’d say the streets reflect more of what figure 5 indicates, then 4 followed by 6 and then 2. I don’t think I’ve seen either 1 or 3 so I can’t understand how 3 got 20% more then even figure 4.

    And where do they get the “white hijab” from? Egyptian women co-ordinate their hijab with their outfit. If the respondents thought this is how women should dress, there should be a whole lot more women in Egypt wearing the white hijab.

    There is no way only 14% think women should chose their own clothing in Egypt. For that to be true, it would have to mean someone else is choosing for wives and daughters to wear the skinny jeans and long Tshirt type tops that are so popular in Egypt. The study simply does not reflect the reality of how women dress in Egypt so something is wrong

    Also I’m having a hard time envisioning getting enough people together to pass out cards, have Egyptians tick their preference and then return the card. It’d have to be a VERY small sample of people they surveyed.

  143. Ken4 years ago

    Once again, this is an OPINION SURVEY. This is not claiming actual percentages on how women in these countries currently dress. Read the article, it’s more than safe to assume that people’s preferences aren’t in line with how they actually live.

    1. Tootous Shabka4 years ago

      Ken but in countries like Tunisia, Egypt, Lebanon where there is no enforced dress code, the survey opinion numbers should reflect more closely to what people are actually wearing. In Egypt people’s dress can pretty much match their opinion of appropriate dress.

      1. Niels Georg Bach Christensen4 years ago

        The question is ‘what dress is appropriate’, it’s a question which explores people’s normative view. It doesn’t really tell if someone will force anyone to dress accordingly. I think that even in Denmark not a small minority thinks that a very short dress shirt isn’t that appropriate, but none will force anyone, and everyone will say that’s it’s the woman i case own decision.

  144. dana4 years ago

    Hey, it would also be interesting to say whether the percentages change according to whether the respondent is a woman or a man? Maybe women are more conservative ? Or men are ?

  145. Ansa4 years ago

    Forcing a women to cover up her body,is a crime.
    Forcing a woman not to cover up is a crime too.
    End of the day,its her body.
    Let her wear whatever she is comfortable in.
    Let them decide,for god sake.

  146. David Bond4 years ago

    Please repeat the study for men.

  147. miak4 years ago

    why is Indonesia, the world’s most populous Islamic nation (according to Wikipedia – with approximately 202.9 million identified as Muslim (88.2% of Indonesia’s total population of 237 million)), left out of this survey?

    1. Susanne4 years ago

      Thank you for this question. I am not from Indonesia but I was very surprised not to find the country in here

    2. Yul4 years ago

      or Malaysia for that matter/

  148. Elle4 years ago

    First: plenty of these countries are not muslim, if a country has a large muslim population that doesn’t make it muslim! This stereotyping is getting annoying. Lebanon is not a Muslim country,Islam is not the religion of the state, the Lebanese constitution recognises the 3 heavenly religions. Lebanon is a diverse country that has a large Christian population and a Christian President and the majority of the muslims are not even conservative.
    Second: how come in the other statistic it shows Tunisia and Turkey above Lebanon?which contradicts the 1st table.
    third: these statistics are from a few points of view and does not represent fairly the populations, it does not show seriousness when the gender (of the voters) is not mentioned and like I said countries being labelled as “Muslims”
    Fourth and most importantly: a Woman is free to wear whatever she wants !!

  149. Mmmm4 years ago

    Interesting results although I think the survey is flawed. The use of the word “appropriate” creates a significant bias.

    For instance, if asked to tell which is more appropriate between a pantsuit and a miniskirt, I’ll answer the pantsuit. That doesn’t mean I have any problems with miniskirts.

    This is further emphasized by the fact that respondent could only pick one option.

    1. Jim Cashville4 years ago

      Using your example, it also doesn’t mean that either the pantsuit or mini skirt is the preferred choice that you would have.

      Surveys are very limited in the accurate information they can give us. But we are a people of limited attention span and therefore not much else works these days.

    2. Tootous Shabka4 years ago

      Good point, only having only the one choice isn’t an actually reflection of complete feeling, Also living in Egypt, I can say the Egyptian results do not correspond with styles seen on women.

  150. Magda4 years ago

    Telling women what to wear ….so Midieval ..how evil…

  151. Circuit Ben4 years ago

    Response from women should be – it’s none of your business what i wear.

  152. LINA4 years ago

    PERSONALLY…. i prefer what Eve wore in the Garden of Eden….. I like nudity… its natural and the human body is totally beautiful. ( most of them) =)

  153. Benedict Murray4 years ago

    How about women should dress as they want?

    crazy thought i know but they should try it.

  154. Rasha4 years ago

    It’s a matter of a free choice, It’s not about others prefers

  155. Elie Matar4 years ago

    Lebanon is not a muslim country

    1. anas4 years ago

      yes it is

      1. Bichu4 years ago

        Yea, so tell me why is the weekend Saturday-Sunday since the age of times -_- ?

  156. Bichu4 years ago

    First, Lebanon has 35% of Christians (if you exclude expatriates who are mainly Christians). Add the third of the 60% Muslims and half of the 5% Druzes who prefer not wearing the veil. This makes 57% against wearing the veil. I don’t care about the exact percentage 57%, but I am just emphasizing that it is certainly more than 50%. Also, there is definitely more than 3% of Lebanese women wearing the Tchador. I am sorry to say that all these numbers are just another conspiracy against the true Lebanon.

    Btw, nobody shall deny it. Hijab is in at least 80% of the cases, even in Lebanon, the symbol of oppression against women OR the result of the entourage and family brain-washing. My veiled friend admitted it. She told me that she chose the Hijab at 12 but that at around 15 her family (as most families do) would do anything to pressure her to wear it (to preserve the honor of the family, otherwise she would have to leave, best case scenario). And I also have another courageous friend who removed the Hijab at 18 and all women of her family followed, because they realized how the society exploited their religion to make them wear the Hijab (accoring to the Quran, women should wear the veil BUT PEOPLE TAKE IT AS “WOMEN MUST WEAR THE VEIL TO GO TO PARADISE”)

    And if I were president of Lebanon I would ban #1 #2 and #3 in public places. Believe me as soon as a woman wearing #1 #2 or #3 enters a hospital (for instance) of a Christian neighborhood, people (including other Muslims) get frustrated and racist/discriminating behaviors start appearing.

    Also, the 15% of unveiled women in Tunisia seems ridiculous.

    1. Ken4 years ago

      Isn’t this a survey on how people “prefer women to dress?”

      If so, your comment makes no sense, it doesn’t correlate to how they actually do dress it’s simply a statistic on how people in these countries feel women should dress.

      1. Hsaqc4 years ago

        neither does yours for the actual position on ground is indicative of preference.

  157. Hsaqc4 years ago

    sorry, category 5 rather than 4.

  158. Hsaqc4 years ago

    For Pakistan, in my view, category 4 dominates. hijab is an arab import with little nexus with the local cultural and social setting. it has lesser following overall. in major urban cities category 6 is fairly visible.

  159. Nah4 years ago

    what was the criteria to conduct this study? who were the people and how many from each country? I have visited some of these countries and I pretty sure the data the collected would be from smaller cities and or rural areas. Some stats seems not only misleading but also fabricated.

    1. ME4 years ago

      It tells you the sample set they used on page 130.


  160. Usama4 years ago

    Egypt is the last country that their women can choose their own clothes …. so poor research and have lack in information .. also where is India, Iran, Indonesia and Bangladesh … Really I wish to do this research well and do it in several Islamic countries cause it seems that it’s already done in country that just get its all information from media and T.V

  161. JAhZ4 years ago

    Arent’t all countries back- asswards.
    In America, our marriage is the same as a coin flip.

  162. aneela4 years ago

    I went through the report and i guess the flaw in rspect of Pakistan data is that it is 51% lower middle class males and 48% house wives , so the out come was natural 😛

  163. aneela4 years ago

    I am a muslim women, over 45 , from Pakistan, I do not entirely reject the research but do not accept it either because there are many loose ends and many factors remain questionable, but I disagree as far as my own perception of my society goes, and I would say mostly Pakistani women fall under category 5 and 6 , mostly women make their own choice , and i do agree that radicalism is increasing as compared to 30 years ago, but still mostly we fall under 5 and 6 , cheers and stay happy 🙂

  164. Sami Nasfi4 years ago

    Good Study. we don’t know though if the respondants are male or mixed. I’m from Tunisia and this study is interesting to understand the perception of people, but you should extend the study with what women do in reality, are they following the perception pressure or are they really free to wear what they really want.

    1. Pascale4 years ago

      Well , I guess if I want to go on vacation , Tunisia looks like the better choice !

  165. valentina beatini4 years ago

    I am wondering who was the surveyed people.Did they asked to Arabian women as well?

  166. alaa4 years ago

    that’s a very bad reality !! as I live it !

  167. Steven Blade4 years ago

    The fact that Lebanon is listed as a majority Muslim country, deliberately overlooking its >50% Christian population shows how ignorant this researcher is. stop undermining people’s intelligence please.

    1. A N4 years ago

      Lebanon has almost 60% muslim population. Maybe you should do your own research

      1. Steven Blade4 years ago

        maybe I have been to planet Lebanon, lived there-in many areas in, around and outside of Beirut- and know a thing or two about it, Einstein! 60% based on whose numbers? whose facts? care to share them?

        1. Aguilito4 years ago

          source: CIA,The World Factbook (=USA-Government, so NO, it cannot be true!)

          Religions: Muslim 59.7% (Shia, Sunni, Druze, Isma’ilite, Alawite or Nusayri), Christian 39% (Maronite Catholic, Greek Orthodox, Melkite Catholic, Armenian Orthodox, Syrian Catholic, Armenian Catholic, Syrian Orthodox, Roman Catholic, Chaldean, Assyrian, Coptic, Protestant), other 1.3%

          note: 17 religious sects recognized

  168. Mona Abdeljawad4 years ago

    Thanks for the findings. What is most interesting about this research is that it reinforced the Islamic stereotype that hijab is a “cultural” choice not a “woman’s” free religious choice. At the end of the day a woman should choose to cover as a religious choice that only SHE should make what people think should not even part of the discussion.

  169. George4 years ago

    Lebanon is not a Muslim country. There are Muslims in Lebanon indeed but it’s actually the only Christian country in the Middle East.

    1. A N4 years ago

      Lebanon has almost 60% Muslim population. Therefore the majority.

  170. liza4 years ago

    While certainly interesting, I must say this is not a fair study at all. (Before the accusations come flying I’m not a Muslim, I’m simply objective.) This article is meant to stir up a bunch of hype, but they fail to factor in the countries with the largest Muslim populations, they include Christians in their study (even though it’s only meant for Muslims), fail to have a control sample, fail to include what is considered inappropriate, fail to distinguish between whether or not they polled men, women, or both, etc. etc. There are A LOT of holes in this study. I think it needs to be done again the correct way this time. It really would be interesting to see the results of that.

  171. YouForgot4 years ago

    How many people where questioned? These percentage numbers doesn’t say anything unless you state how many people you have questioned!

  172. Ahmet4 years ago

    I dont know , how did you generate this result but I live in Turkey.Therefore I know my country’s society that volume of type 4 is less than volume of type 6.For instance lots of Iranian people come to Turkey for a holiday.Especially women get rid of their restrictions.Would it be possible in dark conservative society? World can see Erdoğan side on the newspapers.However , there are lots of people againist his policies and people’s who are againist Erdoğan’s policy is not that low percentage.As you could see Gezi Park protest.If you take your time for searching Atatürk’s revolutions.You will see reform’s in Turkey.Such as clothing reforms etc…Furthermore , people who has been in Turkey before would have understood what I claim.I am sorry but this article is such a mess…

  173. Arabian Guy4 years ago

    Lots of women in middle east choose by their own to wear veil. Its not about forcing them or being afraid. Its all about that they believe that its the right way to be more valuable.
    Wearing Veil like #3, is also available in Christianity a Jewish.

    I gave my wife the choice, she choose to wear like #4

    1. dana4 years ago

      Hey Arabian Guy, you say you gave your wife the choice : maybe I misunderstood or you were not clear, but the way you say this makes me tell you the following : who are YOU to give the choice to your wife? I mean, does she need somebody to give her the choice? Should she not have the choice naturally and automatically ?

    2. Aguilito4 years ago

      “…Lots of women in middle east choose by their own to wear veil…”

      Nice one. Lets see if we can add a few more:
      “Lots of women in middle east choose to be Muslim…?”
      “Lots of women in middle east choose to marry a Muslim husband…?”
      “Lots of women in middle east choose to ….go to mosques/follow Ramadan rules/ etcetera”

  174. Mohammed4 years ago

    The writer has a preset agenda in publishing the article. He want to put a idea to comment against the islamic dressing. So he concludes the article that most of the people like to have the freedom to choose the dress code while in public. But that does not mean that they want to follow the western culture. Their may bed looking the options of dressing in the same alternatives available. Muslims are safe in any these dress as long as it does not figure out bady shapes.

  175. Tounssi4 years ago

    Talking to a few Tunisian women, looks like they went with 4 and 5 as a new trend to avoid being bothered in the streets if they choose 6. now how misleading is that?

  176. Tahir4 years ago


  177. Massimo4 years ago

    And how do they prefer men to dress in public?

  178. orhan ural4 years ago

    As a citizen of Turkey, I think this study fairly reflects the situation all around Turkey. But for example if it was done in regions including İstanbul, İzmir or other Aegean region cities it would give you same results with Netherlands 🙂 (If you conduct this study in outskirts of Amsterdam of course) Visit Turkey and enjoy! I lived in Spain for a while and visited some more European countries too. Turkey (especially Marmara and Aegean regions) is very familiar with Europe, so come and enjoy 🙂

  179. Ronia4 years ago

    Sorry as a muslim even I know Lebanon is far from a muslim country. Our Christian brothers and sisters and been there many centuries before us. So im not surprised on that outcome.

  180. Katie4 years ago

    I think what disturbs me most is not what people consider appropriate or not in which countries, as that is personal opinion, but that the number of people who believe that a woman should be allowed to choose what she thinks is best is less than 100%. Is anyone telling men what is appropriate and what isn’t? Why would it not be up to me as a woman to wear what I think is appropriate without consequence? Even in “western” countries, women are assaulted for what they wear because it “provokes” their attacker or they are seen as “asking for it.” I understand that there is a religious belief behind women covering themselves, and that is wonderful for those who choose to follow them, but it should be the choice of the woman to determine what she believes to be appropriate in any given situation, not a man, not the government. If she feels it is appropriate to cover herself completely, then she should be free to do so. She should also be free to be uncovered if she chooses as well without fear of attack. To be told that she is incapable of determining what is appropriate for herself denies her ability to think rationally and make decisions for herself.

  181. Սեդրակ Մկրտչյան4 years ago

    Well where is Iran here?

    1. Parham4 years ago

      as an iranian, i tell you: about 50% like 3 and 4 , and others, something between 5 and 6 .

  182. Vixt4 years ago

    The % sign is on the wrong row (2) for column 1, the rest of columns have the % sign on first row.

  183. maya ibrahimchah4 years ago

    These statistics cannot be accurate: the burqa (first picture to the left, in blue) does not exist in lebanon. It never has. Burqa comes from afghanistan and neigboring countries and has not spread to the levant. So 2% for burqa in lebanon cannot be an accurate statistic for a sad dress code that does not even exist in this part of the world

  184. mehhh….4 years ago

    All of these people who comments is not even islam …

  185. Ritz4 years ago

    Women should be able to dress how they wish – very simple!

  186. Van4 years ago

    Lebanon ain’t half bad compared to the rest apparently.

  187. Perdana Karim Prihartato4 years ago

    Not showing Indonesia in the data is a big mistake. Indonesia is the most populous moslem country in the world.

  188. MeowIndian4 years ago

    This has nothing to do with women. The reality is that a natural thing like sex is a taboo in these countries and men/women are sexually repressed. Men can’t control their urges towards women so they use force and religion to make women dress like that.

  189. bob4 years ago

    Nice job with no Indonesia. Really credible…

  190. Charles Knott4 years ago

    Now correlate this info with how many of these countries have hardliners with guns that believe in Sharia.

  191. FREE MAYN4 years ago

    Women being oppressed on behalf of religion… what’s new? What’s funny is they don’t know they’re being oppressed. Okay, it’s not funny…it’s really sad. Their males perpetuate an ignorant society resulting in the way these women have to dress and how intolerant their cultures are to modern human rights. What a joke.

  192. Bill4 years ago

    Summaries like this should include info about the respondents. From the survey pdf:

    The overall survey response rate was 78%. Among the 3,070 respondents 55% were female, 17% had university education with a degree, 38% were currently employed, and 66%
    were married. In terms of class background, 0.4% self-reported as members of the up
    per class, 26% upper middle class, 36% lower middle class, 25% working class, and 12% lower class.

  193. America4 years ago

    The fact that this is even an issue shows how backwards these countries are.

    1. James4 years ago

      Yes. These Muslim women are backward just like Mary, the mother of Jesus and Mother Theresa and most of the Christian nuns!

    2. Amerikkka4 years ago

      The fact that you’re ethnocentric shows how backwards your opinion is.

    3. Petrus4 years ago

      Well, you could just as easily show a series of photos of women in varying degrees of dress in the US, and ask the same question. You would perhaps get similar responses? The girls who dressed extremely ‘slutty’ would be deemed as being unacceptable… I say this only for a modicum of perspective.

    4. SDrawkCab4 years ago

      Don’t be so quick to judge, America.

      You’re also filled with prudish Puritanical nonsense about body parts. You’ve sexualized female breasts. You’re about 100 years behind most of Europe in terms of openness about human sexuality. You tease, but then you explode with righteous fury when someone shows a nipple.

      Is the Muslim world mostly an awkward clash of modern society and Bronze Age vomit?


      But America has a little bit of that crap running through its veins too.

    5. Doug4 years ago

      If you were given choices of women in Jeans & T, short-shorts, singlet and thongs, bikini, sexy lingerie, and naked. And asked to choose the woman most appropriately outfitted for a public place. I’m sure you would have a preference based on your cultural values.

    6. guy15s4 years ago

      The fact that it is an issue they are considering shows how forward they are moving.

    7. vanauger4 years ago

      Backward? Look at your people. Almost naked, do you call that “advanced”? Then we could say the same thing to our ancestors, what ever you call em.

    8. Mm24 years ago

      If we are backwards what about women of your country? They are following people of Amazon forest where they are always naked.what do u say about them they are modern or you are modern…Islam teaches us how to forward with modesty.Even mother Marry(pbuh) wear hijab.she always covered her . She was a symbol of modesty. do u follow her?

    9. G Young4 years ago

      Labeling the entire country as backward is excessive. You might recall a lot of people in developed countries seem to have no problem with blaming women for ‘dressing provocatively’ when a rape occurs.

    10. AlienEarth4 years ago

      The problem with that sort of logic is that it can be applied to anything and accomplishes nothing:

      1) The fact that gun violence is a even an issue shows just how violent America is.
      2) The fact that spying on its citizens is even an issue shows just how deceitful America is.
      3) The fact that Mickey Mouse isn’t in the public domain shows just how corrupt America is.
      4) The fact that America’s military budget accounts for 40% of global arms spending shows just how war hungry they are.


    11. Anon4 years ago

      They’re not the ones doing the survey…

    12. ADEEL NAIM KHAN4 years ago

      Atleast its WAY WAY WAY WAY WAY better than being naked … There has to be a difference between humans and animals …

      1. Interested4 years ago

        Are people all naked in the USA? Wow. Must be some sight with all that obesity.

    13. France4 years ago

      Yes America tell them. Either behave yourself or surrender your oil, or prepare to be liberated!

    14. not your business4 years ago

      I assume you mean the states in the USA..yes for me the USA and big portion of its population are backwards and arrogant not to keep your own business and feel you have the right to interfere with others and dictate what they should be doing .It only shows great ignorance and tolerance to other people culture/religion.

    15. Ammar Alrawahi4 years ago

      We all assumed the significant backwards is being without clothing as in the early life. The critical point in discussing this kind of issues is to respect other cultures speially regional believes.
      All my respect for all.

    16. Dave Foster4 years ago

      America’s troll account would say something like that. The cold war is over dude, stop trying to tell me that the choice between Coke and Pepsi still matters. The underlying self gratification that we Americans feel is not freedom. It is individualism. The fact that other countries have a culture that extends beyond selfism and holds the individual to a group standard does not inherently make that community “backwards”. The fact that you don’t understand this is upsetting to me, because your name implies that you represent a certain idea and culture that happens to belong to me. I would appreciate it if you didn’t make statements that make us Americans look like idiots. Maybe it would be better if you just didn’t say anything at all.

    17. As.B4 years ago

      On the contrary, it is not an issue at all.This is nothing but a curious “survey” about the culture of muslim countries, and perhaps educate those who are ignorant of other cultures. The world goes beyond your tiny bubble and whether you like it or not, every one is entitled to live however they wish and what you deem to be “backward” is just different from what you were brought up in. The only thing that is backward is your prejudiced perception, unfortunately.

    18. AntiRascist4 years ago

      What do you mean by “how backwards” ? Seems like you’ve got a lot of information about theese countries Mr./Mrs America?

    19. hamza4 years ago

      at least these in these “backwards” countries people do not risk getting shot in the streets, or in schools…

    20. i like turtles4 years ago

      Same goes for gay rights; but ‘murrica can’t stop arguing about that either… Discussing things is the only way that can lead up to a solution. You can’t let these things to stay as taboo. Even if the outcome is negative, only by keep talking about them you can actually make people see the right thing by themselves.

    21. aneela4 years ago

      well this seems to be a big issue at Pew Research centre , I hope you are not calling them back wards 😛

    22. mohaimin4 years ago

      what do you mean by backwards?

      You are progressive ? doing sex like animal, killing people like beast? taking drug, these all are the symbol of modernized society?

    23. Love The World4 years ago

      The fact that america invaded and/or interfered with these countries shows how backwards the USA is..

    24. Erum Faisal4 years ago

      If the research was on America, it would have been no clothes or just bikini at the top. Its America thats the most backward, as humans initially lived without any clothes. And then when they had a little sense, they started covering themselves with atleast LEAVES.
      Americans are not even worth leaves , sorry to say.

    25. Aguy4 years ago

      Right…because Western countries have no standards for how a woman should dress. I mean, it’s not like women on college campuses feel compelled to walk around half-naked on a freezing cold Thursday/Friday night, right…

    26. Boiller4 years ago

      Ah well, the hijacking of personal freedoms come in different shapes and forms. In Muslim countries it is concentrated on women and what they wear, whereas in the West it manifests itself in institutionalised spying on the people and perpetuating myths of the American Dream, Jesus or how terrible outsiders are.

    27. ahmed tharwat4 years ago

      Pew made it the issue

    28. Hassan4 years ago

      Forgive my inclusion, but please dont tell me that my country is in backwards…wanna talk about setbacks….. you have Iraq and Palestine.

    29. Ash4 years ago

      This is something for grant in the Islamic believes (“How woman have to dress”)
      Don’t blame these countries, blame the one who wrote this article magnifying this issue

    30. Aimen4 years ago

      Backwards? Covering your head isn’t a backward. Stop your nonsense words…… it’s our choice we will do whatever we want. If you don’t like it it’s none of your damn business. Haters are haters!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  194. Sil864 years ago

    It is normal for most people in muslim countries to deny the results and pretend that they are not credible! Muslims are people who love to live in denial. A perfect case is the statistic showing the highest percentage of porn searches on Google which is a straight forward analysis not based on polls and still being denied by most in Pakistan, etc..

    1. heidi4 years ago

      Wow. .if only you knew that muslims are alll over the world.. check the statistics. Less than 25% live in the middle east. Probably notv brilliant to generalize.

    2. Awais Khan4 years ago

      You fail to recognise that denial is okay as long as it is backed up with facts and the truth. The porn poll thingy was denied by google. Is there a source more credible than google for identifying the number of google searches?

    3. Sonia4 years ago

      Go and search yourself, Indian cities are on top. not Pakistan. Perhaps because in south-east asian countries, pre-marital sex isnt much easily available due to respectable culture, unlike west.

  195. Martijn4 years ago

    Notice that the survey does not give ANY data to conclude what people in those countries find inappropriate. It only tells something about what people think is MOST appropriate. Respondents could only choose one out of six options, hence the total of 100% per row. For this reason it’s a very bad article.

    1. John Marshall4 years ago

      It just says “appropriate”. What is “appropriate. It’s not “this is a comprehensive representation of all thoughts and feelings on the dress of women”. It’s asking what they find appropriate. If they found woman #5 to be appropriate, or woman #1, that’s what they would put. It’s not “more appropriate” or “less appropriate”, it’s just “appropriate”. Therefore, if somebody chooses Woman 1 you can bet they aren’t going to be too keen on 2 much less 3. It’s not a bad article, you just took Psych 101 and want to join in.

    2. Mingho4 years ago

      You don’t need to ask for what is appropriate. The pictures from left-to-right/#1-to-#6 are most-covered to least-covered. If #1 is chosen as the most appropriate, then #6 would be the least appropriate. Any of the other pictures in between, you can think of like temperatures. A specific temperature is ideal. Deviation in either direction moved towards too hot or too cold.

      Besides, in most the world, the less-covered you are, the more inappropriate it is.

      You can’t use kindergarten-level observation and pattern recognition. “For this reason” you are stupid.

    3. ahmed tharwat4 years ago


  196. Rane Hafied4 years ago

    Should’ve included Indonesia with its largest muslim population. Perhaps the result would be more interesting 🙂

    1. G Young4 years ago

      Agree entirely, though I’d be very surprised if you could get a representative sample given how incredibly diverse each community’s practices are.

    2. Will4 years ago

      and Iran…

  197. Hasan Aamir4 years ago

    This is poor research as all the largest Islamic countries Indonesia, India (2nd biggest Muslim population) Bangladesh, Iran, Nigeria are excluded.

    1. Bernardo Santiago4 years ago

      Actually , Iran has political issues that would affect the opinion of the surveyed. The other countries have different cultures about clothing , and different climates. Being restricted to the Middle East give this research more credit.

  198. GFehr4 years ago

    It’s worth noting that what is appropriate below the neck is not even touched, as it were. A bit too explosive, I have to think.

  199. Anamika_Indian4 years ago

    Not a fair study especially on Pakistan, women dress is very liberal there, don’t portray the image u want to show for Pakistan.. and why the hell do u have to mention 30% Christians Lebanon.. if that’s so then don’t even include it in Muslim women dress study.
    One should do a research on Christian dominated country women dress study..#5 wud be bikini #6 wud be no clothes at all.

    1. Maz4 years ago

      This comment is offensive to me as an Anglo Celt woman.

      1. Alia4 years ago

        That comment was offensive to me as a South Asian woman who is Muslim, talk about the ignorance of SOME Muslims in this comment section!

      2. Sean4 years ago

        Why should anyone care if you’re offended?

      3. Wilson4 years ago

        His last thought was ignorant but you chose a funny way to say “offends me as a white woman”. That could offend you as a as a christian woman or western-culture woman. Seems like you read “muslim” in this article title as “brown-ish people”.

        1. ANTIVICTORIA4 years ago

          Because she’s using poor grammar, I thought she was saying that the comment, is as offensive to her, (comparatively) as Anglo Celt women.

          And I thought, what is so offensive about Anglo-Celt women? Whatever they are.

          I’m a woman of Irish, French, and English descent (and a Muslim) and that was a new one on me.

      4. Andi Fastweg4 years ago

        And what in he world is an “anglo celt woman”??? Is it better than me who I am a German woman?

      5. Avi4 years ago

        I don’t understand why you included “Anglo Celt”.

      6. Another_Indian4 years ago

        As a man and another Indian, I find her comments offensive as well. But again, people are good at generalizing and creating stereotype so I won’t blame her.

      7. Mad4 years ago

        I agree, it’s offensive. Things on this world are not just white and black, there are many other colors in between, and you should not think that women in not islamic countries parade streets naked. The fact that you may see that on billboards or in the movies DOES NOT MEAN that women actually do that in their everyday life.

      8. Sonia4 years ago

        As I Pakistani girl, I agree with you Anamika! Most women and men prefer #5 or #6.

    2. Petrus4 years ago

      In all cultures there are socially acceptable modes of dress. This article attempts to make a point, yet in some ways misses it completely. Dress is not the issue, women’s rights are the issue. On this issue, muslim countries are often far behind.

      That being said I agree, a westernized version of this could be constructed, unfortunately it is also meaningless.

    3. Cordi4 years ago

      You really think you are fooling anyone with that name? And is that really your view of the western world? At least have the balls (as a figure of speech, not being sexist here) to be able to claim who you really are!

    4. Dwood4 years ago

      Anamika- That is true, easily. And i’m saying this as a christian! All you have to do is turn on the tv and find out what they want people to wear.

    5. KIM4 years ago

      Learn to respect and put constructive criticism rather than offensive. This is how nations learn to adapt and respect difference rather than creating more bias and hatred.

    6. Michelle4 years ago

      I live in the USA, were there is a majority of Christians, but if you think we believe that women should walk around in bikini’s or naked, you’re extremely ignorant of the social norms in the USA.

    7. Mohsin4 years ago


    8. JP4 years ago

      Your argument is that Christian societies are absurdly liberal? Quite the opposite; the most liberal countries are the most secular, and on principal alone, liberals would deny that anyone has the authority to decide what fashion is “acceptable” and what isn’t. (Their preference, for what it’s worth, would be based on functionality, not the vestiges of pointless religious traditions.)

    9. Joanne4 years ago

      So do please tell me where in the world women wear bikinis to go about their normal daily business, to go to work, do the shopping, take the kids to school etc? And where on earth do you think it’s normal for people to be entirely naked in public? I’ve lived in the west and have never seen that. You have no idea what you’re talking about, do you?

    10. India4 years ago

      You call yourself an Indian? Shame on you.

    11. Jordi4 years ago

      Why do you say christian? Maybe you meant “western”… because most people where I live are not religious, so they are not christian.

    12. somegal4 years ago

      This comment is offensive to me as an Indian woman, I’m sorry such idiots exist in India if at all this person is Indian.

    13. Hassan4 years ago

      i like the idea about research on the women bikini… just in the right respond

    14. Usman4 years ago

      Awesome comment Anamika ! 🙂

      Just one correction. It is actually liberating for women if they are covered and they are not being judged based on the looks. Even those non-muslim western women who experimented with niqab also felt an amazing mental liberation because they were no more worried about people treating them based on their glamorous looks.

  200. Steve P.4 years ago

    Iran would have also been interesting to see on this list.

    1. john4 years ago


  201. Yasser Tabbaa4 years ago

    “How people in Muslim countries prefer women to dress in public” What does that even mean? What was the sample, and did it represent women as well as men, urban and rural, rich and poor? Also, surveys of attitudes and preferences are probably not very reliable as they involve a great deal of wishful thinking. A better survey would’ve been about the percentage of women in those countries who actually dress according to those categories. I would be very surprised if Turkey, Lebanon, and Tunisia registered so low in the “no head scarf” category.

    1. Shubha4 years ago

      totally Agree

    2. Omer4 years ago


    3. yy4 years ago

      totally Agree, too

    4. lea4 years ago

      i agree

    5. Usama4 years ago

      Perfect words

  202. Dawn4 years ago

    Can you please recreate a similar study in the west? I really want to know what people in the West think is ‘appropriate attire’ for women, since you deemed it important to figure out what Muslim countries want women to wear. It’s only fair, don’t you think? And before analyzing the ‘results’ of your study; think about what perspective you are judging OTHER people’s culture/attire from.

    1. Mi5ael4 years ago

      One major difference: In Moslem states a woman not dressing “appropriately” is often subjected to violence and harassment. Not so much in the West. And yes, women’s rights ARE our business.

      1. reebs4 years ago

        Riiiggght, that’s why one in five women in the US have been raped and the first question people ask when they hear a rape accusation is “what was she (the victim) wearing?” because we live in such an enlightened society that doesn’t judge women for what they wear. victim blaming. look it up. take off those ethnocentrism glasses, look up statistics for rape, domestic violence, street and sexual harassment. ask how many american women are afraid to walk the streets at night.

        women’s rights are your business? GREAT. look around you. you can’t solve the problems in the middle east/south asia you don’t understand them (you’re really not trying to). but maybe the next time you see a women walking down the street and some sleazy guys catcall you tell them to stop. when a guy repeatedly hits on a women at a bar and she keeps saying no you tell him to stop. when women are being groped on the subway right in front of you you ask the guy to stop. all of those things are harassment, they’re not fun, they’re not flattering. it’s uncomfortable at best and dangerous at worst.

        don’t just bleat about women’s rights, find out what they are.

        oh and btw it’s *Muslim

        1. Kiersha4 years ago

          If you are trying to say women harassment in the West is comparable to the Middle East, I’m telling you right now you’re wrong.

          Oh and btw, depending on their dialect, some people from the Middle East pronounce Muslim (quite often their own religion) “Moslem”.

        2. FREE MAYN4 years ago

          I’m hate to break it to you but the statistic you touted about how 1 in 5 women in the US have been raped is one of the stupidest things I have ever read. You must watch Fox News or whatever propaganda is most common in your country. Haha

        3. Jon B4 years ago

          Just letting you know that the statistic is 1 in 5 US women experiences sexual assault, which includes a wide array of actions; an unwanted kiss, someone grabbing their bum, etc. Or maybe you where referring to the statistic that 1 in 4 women experience rape or attempted rape. I’m not disagreeing with you I just figured I’d let you know for future discussions.

          The USA has absolutely horrible rape statistics (roughly 30 rapes per 100,000 people each year). However this does mean that the same problems are not occurring else where (in this case the Middle East, Norther Africa, or Southern Asia). For example the Egyptian Centre for Women’s Rights estimates that 83% of Egyptian women have experienced Sexual Harassment/Assault, and that there are over 200 rapes per 100,000 people each year. Or the fact that 89.2% of urban Bangladeshi men answered ‘agree’ or ‘strongly agree’ to the statement “if a woman doesn’t physically fight back, it’s not rape.”

          So while I whole heartedly agree that the USA has a very serious problem that must be addressed, that does not mean we should ignore the plight of others suffering throughout the world. Where in many cases it is much much worse.

        4. scott4 years ago

          Statistics don’t always tell the truth, many cases of rape in islamist majority countries are not reported at all because fear of prosecution on the woman’s part. If a woman is unsuccessful in a trial she will be condemned as a promiscuous and may even be charged herself

        5. guy15s4 years ago

          Who asks what a chick was wearing after she was raped? Don’t try to equivocate your struggle with that of a woman in one of these countries. You’re using an irrelevant subject to stand on a soapbox and preach your own agenda. The point was that the article focuses on Muslim countries because the struggle that women go through there is significantly more dire then ours. To quote a line that is often used from the perspective of people like yourself that use biased statistics gathered under less than scrupulous methods, check your privilege.

        6. Chloe4 years ago

          I agree that we still have a long way to go in western countries in terms of women’s rights and the current state of affairs is not at all acceptable, but I don’t think you responded fairly to Mi5ael. His heart was in the right place and he clearly cares about women’s rights. I think, at the very least, that’s a good start.

        7. Nancy4 years ago

          Thank you!!

        8. picnic4 years ago

          This is an excellent post. I think your delivery might put some people off, but it’s dead on. Sometimes when people are from a place that’s arguably more enlightened on a certain issue, they forget all of their faults once they’re in a position to compare themselves to another group.

        9. Muslim4 years ago

          This is poor research as all the largest Islamic countries Indonesia, India (2nd biggest Muslim population) Bangladesh, Iran, Nigeria are excluded.

          1. Aguilito4 years ago


            “This is poor research as all the largest Islamic countries Indonesia, India ….”

            Try telling Indian people that they live in a Islamic country!

        10. donjon4 years ago

          I appreciate your defence for muslim countries, but really no one is getting raped so often in the west. And even if they are, the point is women’s rights – her freedom to do whatever she wants and not be controlled by men. If she’s scared to walk at night around subway’s maybe she will be thoughtful enough to not walk in conservative clothes. So please refrain from pointless statistic and lets not deny the fact that women in our countries are fairly oppressed.

          But having said that, I think all this has more to do with backward thinking than religion. Lack of education, higher wage differentials and lack of freedom. Religion is just a protocol. A way of doing things.

      2. to the commenter4 years ago

        sorry dude but thats a lie im in jordan and the women who are even half naked are not harassed

        A harasser or even a rapist wont look at what you are wearing he will just do it !

    2. Ros King4 years ago

      From a New Zealand perspective the question of what is appropriate attire for a woman in a public place just doesn’t make sense. We could ask what is appropriate for the work-place, what is appropriate for a trip to the park, the beach, a restaurant etc. But we don’t have such a strong boundary between public and private life as muslim-influenced cultures do, so there is not the same idea of Being in Public.
      But I think the biggest difference is that the country I come from, NZ, has a culture based around individualism. For sure, people have opinions about what others are wearing, and this might occasionally lead to nasty comments or bad behaviour. But this is nothing to what I feel living in Egypt, where what I wear is, apparently, the business of every person I come across on the street, in the shops or in my husband’s family. ‘Appropriate’ dress, for both men and women, is a well-discussed part of the religion, and because of a more community-driven culture it is seen as appropriate to monitor and influence how individuals dress.

  203. Brooke4 years ago

    It’s an important issue all over the world what a woman wears. When female presidential candidates have their fashion sense commented on as much as in America (versus their male counterparts) you know that the opening line of this is flawed.

    Plus, my experience of the hijabi world is that the black and white hijabs are not just different in color, but also in style. In Jordan and Palestine I observed younger women wearing the *style* of the white hijab, but older women wearing the *style* of the black hijab.

    One thing that this report leaves out is the gender of the respondents. I’d be curious how the sampling was done and how men vs women responded.

  204. Vincent Alexander4 years ago

    I couldn’t help but notice that this survey of the ‘Islamic World’ does not include the country with the largest Islamic population(Indonesia), the country with the third largest Islamic population(India), the country with the fourth largest Islamic population(Bangladesh), or any country at all from Sub-Saharan Africa, where 15% of the world’s Muslims live. I know this isn’t the article’s fault, but if you’re going to throw around terms like ‘Islamic World’ (Whatever that means), you should probably make sure that the area you’re talking about is actually representative of Islam and not just a selection of countries that have been in the news lately.

    1. Kiersha4 years ago

      “An important issue in the Muslim world is how women should dress in public. A recent survey from the University of Michigan’s Institute for Social Research conducted in seven Muslim-majority countries”

      The article never claimed the study represents the Muslim World.

  205. David Boycott4 years ago

    You appear to have inadvertently omitted the – no doubt overwhelming majority of – respondents who correctly replied “it’s none of my business”.

    1. Aguy4 years ago

      That would defeat the overarching goal of such a study, which seems to be furthering the concept of the Other, while ignoring our own society’s gender issues…

  206. Mohamed Ragab Antonio4 years ago

    Saudia Arabia before Egypt ?
    Are you kidding me ? I really doubt this research results ….

    1. Kathem milbes4 years ago

      Well you see majority of the Saudi citizens aren’t jackasses it’s only the government and the citizens of Saudi know that Islam allows women to wear whatever they choose.

    2. Mi5ael4 years ago

      Possibly because they have been conditioned to believe that a sane woman is not going to even want to choose any option other than #1-#3 or #4.

    3. alaa4 years ago


  207. Mudassir4 years ago

    I don’t agree to these statistics as far as Pakistan is concerned. I see that the bigger % is with the last three options instead of first three. we believe that women can wear anything as long as it is within limits of modesty (4,5).

    I really want to see the sample size and its geographic and age division.


    1. spitz4 years ago

      What people think women can wear versus what they think is most appropriate for them to wear aren’t necessarily the same.

      Anyways, you should be able to get close to the data you’re looking for by checking the actual study which this is just a small part of.

    2. Michelle4 years ago

      Most pictures I see from Pakistan, the women are dressed with the loose scarf, showing part of their hair. Most women I know in the US that are from Pakistan wear the loose scarf or don’t cover their hair at all.

      If nothing else, this shows that much in the Muslim world is less about religion than it is about cultural norms-like them or not. OH, and in Lebanon and Turkey, even Muslim women are less likely to wear hijab-its not just the Christians skewing the numbers. I know women from there whose family actively objected when they chose to cover their hair (style 4).

    3. Aguilito4 years ago

      lovely statement: “…we believe that women can wear anything…” ; sounds good, but then it continues as a default Muslim joke: “….as long as it is within limits of modesty (4,5)”.

      How about :”You can choose any man you want, as long as it is the man your father selected for you …”
      “Religion is free!; you can choose any religion you want, as long as it is Islam”
      “You future husband’s religion is not important, as long as he’s a Muslim”

      Makes sense.

  208. Anna4 years ago

    “An important issue in the Muslim world is how women should dress in public.”
    What- because you say so? Just because you find the dress code of the “Muslim world” fascinating does not make it necessarily an issue- particularly in all of the countries you listed. Seriously, ask a stupid question… I bet if you asked people in the “non Muslim world” (is that really how neatly it’s split?) how they think women should dress they’ll have opinions that you won’t agree with.

    “In Iraq and Egypt, woman #3, whose hair and ears are covered by a more conservative black hijab, is the second most popular choice.”
    I seriously hope you did enough research to realise that this is not actually a “more conservative hijab” but is actually the Iranian chador, which is a floor length cloak held together with the hands or teeth. This is radically different to the white hijab, which you can wear with any style of dress, abaya or pants.

    1. Mi5ael4 years ago

      Except, in most non-Moslem countries

    2. Mi5ael4 years ago

      Except, in most non-Moslem countries people’s “preference” does not result in violence, harassment, and threats, whereas in many Moslem states it does. Since you are so on top of your research, I trust you are familiar with acid attacks where women are disfigured for life for various “crimes,” including not dressing “modestly” enough. Recorded instances range from North Africa, the Caucus, Africa, Central Asia, and the Far East, i.e. throughout Islamdom. Wake up.

      1. Anna4 years ago

        I am “so on top of my research” that I live most of the year in a “Moslem” (if by that you mean Muslim majority) and Arab country where women dress however they please.

      2. Tunisian Woman4 years ago

        I am Tunisian, I do not wear the hijab, my mother wears the hijab, dad is against the hijab and we are a typical Tunisian family. When you talk about North Africa I feel like I’m from China.

  209. rita14 years ago

    Cuestión de gustos

  210. Ahmad Munir4 years ago

    As a Pakistani, I am surprised by the findings, majority of women that I come across at university or workplace or society in general are #5 & #6 …and no one seems to care. I think it depends a lot on social/class context.

    By the way, they should have used the same woman in all 6 photos.

    1. Asad Hasan4 years ago

      You live in an urban bubble sir…step out the the rural majority, its not what you think.

    2. asim ali4 years ago

      I think you misunderstood what those numbers represent. Your observation is a positive statement i.e. how things are, whereas what the results of the poll indicate how people would prefer women dress. Their preferences may not necessarily be reflected in real situations because of many factors including social/class context

  211. Asim Sami4 years ago

    Interesting, but one thing to notice, those percentages in many cases to not reflect the percentage of how women actually dress in those countries. Eg, in Turkey a lot more women do not wear a headscarf, and I think only 20% cover their heads.

    Also, in Pakistan, a lot more than just 2% don’t cover their heads, and it can depend on which part of the country the poll was taken. Same with Egypt.

  212. Lee E4 years ago

    I would be interested to see how/if this chart changes if responses are separated by men-only and women-only.

  213. Dina T. Bayoumy4 years ago

    No. 4 is the most appropriate style

    1. Trish L4 years ago

      Can you say why the sight of a woman’s hair in public is inappropriate? Hijab (head cover) for Muslim women is not mandated in the Qur’an. As I understand it, the relevant Hadith is a weak one, where the transmittor is unknown. It is number 4092, titled: “How Much Beauty Can A Woman Display?”:

      (4092) ‘Aisha said: Asthma’, daughter of Abu Bakr, entered upon the Apostle of Allah (may peace be upon him) wearing thin clothes. The Apostle of Allah (peace be upon him) turned his attention from her. He said: O Asthma’, when a woman reaches the age of menstruation, it does not suit her that she displays her parts of the body except this and this, and he pointed to her face and hands.

      1. Ahmad Talaat4 years ago

        No, It is mandatory and not only mentioned in Hadith. I hope that these links will be useful!



      2. Taha4 years ago

        Are you mad? The hijab is mandatory. And how can you say that the hadith is a weak one? Just because you don’t know who actually said it? You should get your facts straight before challenging.those who carry more knowledge than you do.Creating falsehood does not benefit anyone.

  214. syed ali4 years ago

    about #4, what makes it different from 5, and preferable to the biggest number, is that the hair is completely covered, *not* that it’s white, as the italics in the text imply.

  215. Gio4 years ago

    I wouldn’t say lebanon is a Muslim country or a Christian country.

  216. Fardagán4 years ago

    After reading this (so interesting) research report, I would like to invite you all to just search through Internet (Google, Yahoo, DuckDuckGo… whatever you prefer) for photographs and pictures of some Muslim countries people around 40-50 years ago.

    I’ll let you search by yourself, using your own criteria, without making any suggestion on the media you should use or the pages you should visit. Just a plain images search for any Muslim country and dates from the past century ’80s, ’70s or ’60s.

    You’ll be surprised with those images.

    1. Emam4 years ago

      Exactly, in the last 50 years trends and attitudes over our societies have been dramatically shifted to radicalism. Many reasons could justify this fact, even-though, i guess next generations in some conservatives societies such as Egypt and KSA will bring another fact that is very similar to the images of 50s and 60s.

      by z way, KSA is the only country that witness no change in this matter since its creation !!

  217. MikeD4 years ago

    Isn’t Indonesia the largest Muslim country ? Not included ??

    1. Lissy Goose4 years ago

      MikeD, yes you are correct. The largest Muslim population in a country is Indonesia. I am disappointed that Indonesia was not included in this study.

    2. Matt Bridgewater4 years ago

      Indonesia, Pakistan, India, then Bangladesh. Only Pakistan appeared on the survey.

      1. Tunisian Woman4 years ago

        Nigeria either

  218. MikeD4 years ago

    Was this an internet study, or in person? If online imagine how more conservative the offline community would be… gender breakdown would be very interesting as well

  219. Karis Dowsell4 years ago

    Following on from what Bryan ^ asked, do you have a breakdown of the gender and age cross-sections? Unless I’ve missed it there’s no sample size either…

  220. Bryan4 years ago

    What is the base for the study? Males 18+? or were women allowed to answer?

    1. Jacob Poushter4 years ago

      Hi Bryan,

      Sample sizes ranged from around 2,000 to 3,500 in each country and were nationally representative of the adult population, including both men and women. See pages 14-15 of the PDF: mevs.org/files/tmp/Tunisia_Final… for the demographic characteristics of the sampled survey respondents including average age, percentage of respondents that are: male, have a university education, and currently married; and respondents religion, employment status, and self-reported social class. There are also data collection characteristics, with sample sizes, survey dates, and response rates.

      Demographic crosstabs, including results by gender, were not included in the public release of this survey.


      1. Brooke4 years ago

        And Jacob- does the study take into account the point made by both Anna and I- that the styles of the #3 and #4 are different, and that that is meaningful for the sample?


      2. Csudi4 years ago

        But it would be absolutely necessary to see the data separately for men and women.

      3. Sez Es4 years ago

        ” Secular politics: A clear majority of Tunisians as well as Iraqis, Lebanese, and Turkish respondents favor secular politics, as between almost 70% and 80% strongly agree or agree that their country would be a better place if religion and politics were separated.”

        According to the result of above, I can see that you have a question in your survey about “secular politics” so, how come were you able to ask the same question to Turkish citizens that you are doing it inaccurate when considering the fact that Turkey has already been a secular country since 1924?????

        1. Bruce Drake4 years ago

          Sez Es… Just to clarify one point. This is not a survey that Pew Research conducted. It is a report about a survey conducted by the University of Michigan. bit.ly/1dz3wVC