Em memória de Mahsa Amini: Testemunhos de (tantas outras) mulheres

Em memória de Mahsa Amini e de tantas outras mulheres que no Irão perderam as vidas, a liberdade, a identidade, pelo simples facto de serem mulheres, partilhamos um conjunto de testemunhos que muito nos fazem pensar e fazer tudo o que está ao nosso alcance para que a revolução aconteça, em sororidade entre mulheres iranianas e portuguesas.

In the name of Mahsa,

I am an Iranian woman, a thirty-seven-year-old, a PhD student. To remind you, Iran is famous for Cyrus Cylinder, Omar Khayyam, Abu Bakr Razi, Maryam Mirzakhani, Anousheh Ansari, etc. After the Islamic Revolution of 1979, women’s status in society was demoted with the introduction of religious beliefs. Wearing a hair scarf and Islamic clothes (covering head and body completely) have become mandatory even for non-muslin or tourists. As a woman, even older than 18 years, you cannot book a room in a hotel except with the presence of a mahram such as a husband, father or brother. You cannot ask for a passport without the official permission of your father or husband.

Some of the limitations for a woman in Iran: riding a bicycle or motorcycle, having a boyfriend, swimming in uncovered public pools, singing and dancing, selecting your clothes style, the presence of women in the stadium, becoming judges and lots of other daily things.

Let me share one of my stories. I had been a teacher at the University in Iran for seven years; I received some warnings to be friendly with my students. University security asked me not to wear bright-coloured clothing or lipstick because it might provoke the male students. I was not allowed to criticize the government or allow students to criticize Iran’s situation in the classroom. Despite my resume and talent, they rejected my application for an official contract because I was not in the same position as them.

I prefer an individual solution for all obstacles toward my success, leaving my home, memories, friends and my families to make my future.

Remembering all those days brings tears to my eyes. I am fighting for my lost youth, for the moments I was not with my family, and for all my lost opportunities as na Iranian woman.

It is time for Woman, life, freedom!

Revolution is happening now!

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Iranian women are facing with a lot of challenges and discrimination throughout their lives. For example, women inherit half of what a man would, and compensation for the death of a woman is also half.

Women are allowed to drive, hold public office, and attend university, do sports, music (with wearing mandatory hijab and covering) but they are not allowed to attend in the stadiums to watch a football game or become a singer or be a president. They are not even allowed to travel abroad without the permission of their father ( if single) or their husband ( if married) or simply drive a motorbike in the streets.

Women in Iran are fighting for minimal and basic human rights to be treated equally as mens.

They are showing bravery by coming in the streets and public places to show their protest against the Islamic republic while, this can lead to some dangerous outcomes such as being arrested , threatened, kidnapped and even raped by the regime.

Iranian Women will not stop until the Islamic republic falls.

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My client is willing to forgive all her dowry. They have been living separately for years. She has no request except for divorce. She’s been paying for herself and her child for years.Her husband is stubborn and does not divorce her.

I wish one day in Iran the law will understand that a woman has the right to leave the marriage that she does not want (for any reason). The day the law accepts that a woman is a human being.

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Three years after marriage and while I had a two-year-old daughter, our problems reached the peak and even family violence. It was difficult for me to continue living together.  During the past three years, I had neither a work permit nor the right to social activities.  I only had the role of a mother at home, who had to perform duties without any salary.

I finally decided to divorce. According to the law, women do not have the right to divorce and if they do, they have child’s custody until the child  is seven years old. When I asked for a divorce, my ex-husband did not agree to the divorce.  And he kept me on hold for seven years until our daughter turned nine years old, and during all this time I was prohibited from seeing my daughter.

After seven years of going back and forth in the courts, I finally got a divorce, but even after that he prohibited me from seeing my daughter.  Even once, when I found my daughter’s school after a lot of inquiries and I went to school with a cake on her birthday, he found out and threw a tantrum and changed my daughter’s school.  And since then, my daughter was so scared that she sent me a message not to visit her again.

Eight years have passed since then and I have not seen my daughter.

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I am a writer. In my 50’s, on another ordinary day, I was driving my car in the streets of Tehran with my daughter. Being in my own car and at my own ease, after being in traffic for more than an hour, my wail (hijab) had slipped off from my hair. At the same time, I realized that a young man in the car next to me was honking and trying to tell me to wear my hijab back. I ignored him, but he was insisting to catch my attention. The next time I looked at him I saw that he was holding a card and trying to show me a card, which I continued ignoring and eventually we changed paths.

The next day I received a letter in my office, to find out that the young man is an islamic republic authority. The letter was a request to appear in court for violating the laws of the country. The young man (who had become a judge by being someone’s cousin) treated me like a savage and repeatedly said “I know the color of your hair”. He threatened to send me to prison and forced me to apologize to him publicly for not wearing my hijab correctly. They took my car away for 15 days and gave me a fine.

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In the name of rainbow,

I am an Iranian woman, a musician. Being a musician in Iran wether being a woman or a man has many obstacles. But as a woman it’s even harder. On national tv even doesn’t show musical instruments or Musicians playing an instrument. Going to see a concert, is not that simple either. you are always checked at the entrance of the hall, how you are dressed up and sometimes in “Vahdat hall” in Tehran they won’t let you in because of wearing sandals or “too much” make-up.

To have a concert, to record music to do anything in music world you need a permission from government. Women singers can’t sing in public, only when the audience are all women.

As a woman musician, performing (specially in Vahdat hall), you have to dress so conservative and constantly being careful that your scarf doesn’t fall down. You have to be careful how you speak with the opposite sex, not to raise questions. And many times (I heard from colleagues), in a concert that a politician is in the audience, they stop the female musicians of entering the stage. Sometimes the male musicians refuse to play in such circumstances and the concert get cancelled just last moment but of course sometimes men are afraid too. Being a musician in Iran is like swimming against current.

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In the name of freedom,

I am a twenty nine years old iranian woman. I just imigrate to have freedom in my daily life because I could not choose what to wear and wearing scarf and hiding all part of the body is compulsory in Iran for women. I could not choose what to eat. I could not able to be friend with anyone that I want and if I had a boyfriend I should hide it from others. I could not go to travel alone because the hotels not give a room to a girl even older than 18. Also I could not go to travel with my a group of girl and boy friends because our families were worry about other people believes that they think you are a bad girl. I could not promote in my job too much just because I am a girl.

Many girls also fighting in their families and with their parents to be able to choose what to wear and who be friend with.

The women in Iran are forbidden to sing, to ride a bike, and many other simple things.

It is a revolution For free Iran!

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To me and I believe to many other women, living in Iran is like an experience that you gain in Exchange for being obedient and losing freedom in various shape, freedom of speech, freedom of thinking and acting independently. As far as I remember, during the years I lived in Iran, I have had a monotonous life without many up and downs. The reason was not that I was different from other girls seeking for love, dating, living freely. the reason was that I was totally under the intangible control of men and sometimes even other women, who considered us as properties, and the society norms (whatever it could be right or wrong, fair or not fair) and more important than anything else, I never wanted to embarrass my parents by my behavior.

Nowadays, after the start of protests in Iran (that I prefer to call it “Maturity Revolution” for me), I overthink about my past and I am surprised that how much the acceptance of oppression and injustice penetrated in me just like I was sleeping all those years. During my Bachelor’s and Master’s, for 6 years, I was going to the university almost every day and was checked right in front of the main gate regarding my cloths, make up, nails (in order not to have nail polish), bags… the pain for me these days is that I was totally ok with that and never showed an objection. I didn’t even notice that.

Women in Iran have to wear a “Manto” when they go out, a long (up to knees) and loose piece of clothing over their other clothes. I remember once that I way heading to a place a woman stopped me and requested me to lend her my Manto for some minutes to be able to free her daughter who was forbidden from moving forward without changing her Manto. So, I sat in the car and lend her my Manto.

In my youth, even holding hands of opposite gender (except family) on the street was a crime and you might suddenly be stopped and asked about the relationship. You had to prove the relationship otherwise you would be busted. Even after marriage, when I walked with my husband on the street and saw the police, I unconsciously felt scared and tried to hide myself behind my husband.

But now, I am happy that I am mature enough to stand against all the injustice and bondage and protest against that Islamic Regime in Iran.

Woman, Life, Freedom

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I am an Iranian woman. I grew up in a country where there are many difficulties for women, and we have always been second-class citizens in my country. In this text I will describe some of my bad memories and experiences I had during the years I lived in my beautiful country, which is now ruled by one of the most brutal regimes in the world that recently killed many teenagers and children in the streets.

When I was seven years old and wanted to go to school, I had to wear the hijab and special clothes that covered my whole body. My family was not religious, but I had to wear it when I went to school.

I remember days when it was so hot, but there was no other choice for me, the hijab with the special clothes was the only option I had. I wonder how my parents could accept such a crazy rule and not be against it. This point is just one of many problems we had. Islam says that girls should fully follow all Islamic rules from the age of 9. One of these importante rules is fasting, which means not eating or drinking anything all day. I remember when I was in the fourth grade, I got thirsty and started drinking water without remembering the rule, after which the director of the school started hitting me on the hand with a ruler. I cried a lot because my body and my heart hurt at that moment and even now.

Another sad story that I never forget is about a day when I lost my beautiful aunt. I was sad and then suddenly the skin on my leg was cut when I was doing an activity and I was not paying attention because of this news, I went to the nearest hospital and this hospital was connected to the regime, they could not heal me because I did not cover my leg properly, which was bleeding. Can you believe that? There was a morality police in front of the door of the hospital checking the women, a harrowing story. Then I went to another hospital with all my pain and got treated there.

Now for another topic, talking to boys and just communicating with them as a human being is not appropriate behaviour for a good girl in my country. As a girl, you have to veil yourself and only communicate with girls, and if the morality police see you with a boy, they can arrest you and whip you for perfectly normal behaviour. I had a boyfriend who is now my husband, and I remember they arrested us when we were in a car, and after that, luckily they let us go because we gave them some money, but you do not know how much stress I had at that moment.

In short, I can tell you that you who are listening or reading this article are lucky to not grow up in a my country, and now I will protest against this regime to help the new generation in my country to have a normal life. They are innocent and deserve peace. Please be our voice and support us in this revolution so that women can live freely again.

Pode também ouvir testemunhos de mulheres que vivem no Irão aqui.

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