THE EFFECT OF STEREOTYPES
I am half-Moroccan from my Dad’s side, and he was Muslim. My mum was British and Catholic, and so I was baptised as a baby. However, I always would see my Dad praying when I was young.
Growing up for most of my life with a white British family, and people knowing that I was half-Moroccan, I would get a lot of comments, mostly from adults, saying:
- “It’s lucky you’re not muslim”
- “It’s lucky you don’t look too Moroccan”
- “It’s lucky your Mum didn’t marry your dad, otherwise she would have to wear a scarf and be controlled”
There were plenty more, but I really believe that all of these kinds of things were really harmful to my view on ‘half’ of my culture and so, growing up, I really tried, mostly unconsciously, to distance myself from the connotations of being Moroccan/Arabic had.
I read this article today (below) going through only eight stereotypes about muslim women, and going through them has really made me realise how many I have been told over the years, whether in relation to my family or about others.
This article again, has really made me feel so inspired to fight these concepts with my work and try to convey their damaging effect on people and in turn on stunting my connection to ‘half’ of my cultural identity.