Hijab or Jilbab

"Hijab" or "ḥijāb" (Arabic: حجاب‎) is a veil that covers the head and chest, which is particularly worn by a Muslim female beyond the age of puberty in the presence of adult males. It can further refer to any head, face, or body covering worn by Muslim women that conforms to a certain standard of modesty. It not only refers to the physical body covering, but also embodies a metaphysical dimension, where al-hijab refers to "the veil which separates man or the world from God.” Hijab can also be used to refer to the seclusion of women from men in the public sphere. Most often, it is worn by Muslim women as a symbol of modesty, privacy and morality.

According to the Encyclopedia of Islam and the Muslim World, modesty in the Qur'an concerns both women's and men's gaze, gait, genitalia and garments." Although the Qur'an stresses modesty, it does not specifically require women to keep their faces or heads covered. In fact, the Qur'an never explicitly uses the term hijab in reference to body veiling in any context, instead utilizing the words khimār (خمار) and jilbāb (جلباب), not hijab. Hijab or Hejab refers to The Rules of covering up. It never references the specific item or items of clothing used to cover up.

The term hijab in Arabic literally means “a screen or curtain” and is used in the Qur'an to refer to a partition. The Qur'an tells the male believers (Muslims) to talk to the wives of the Prophet Muhammad behind a hijab. This hijab was the responsibility of the men and not the wives of Prophet Muhammad. Most Islamic legal systems define this type of modest dressing as covering everything except the face and hands in public. Guidelines for covering of the entire body except for the hands, the feet and the face, are found in texts of fiqh and hadith that are developed after the Qur'an. Some interpretations, however, say that a veil is not compulsory in front of blind, asexual or gay men. Αlthough hijab is often seen as a tool utilized by men to control and silence women, the practice is understood differently in different contexts. Μen have also partaken in the practice of veiling. Fadwa El Guindi, a prominent Islamic scholar, writes, “Confining the study of the veil, just like the study of women, to the domain of gender in lieu of society and culture narrows the scope in a way that limits cultural understanding and theoretical conceptualization”. Post September 11, 2001, the hijab has generated much controversy and stereotyping. Many countries have attempted to restrict the wearing of the hijab in public spaces, causing outcry both within and outside of the Muslim community and compelling women to veil as a statement against repression.