Illustration: Ninjabi Comics
Ninjabi is a word made up by combining 'ninja' and 'hijabi'. Ninjabi is a comic-strip created by a group of four people who go by the aliases Amethyst, Diamond, Muskaan and Elysium. Ninjabi features a young woman called Noor and her group of friends living in the United States. Ninjabi subverts stereotypes about what it means to be a young woman who wears a hijab, a simple piece of cloth that has come to be much-maligned outside the Arab world. Like many women around the world, Ninjabi portrays Noor believing in the hijab as a source of strength.Ninjabi touches on a number of themes that young women, and American-Muslims, can relate to, from feeling anger at the stereotyping of Muslims, to worry about an arranged marriage. Ninjabi shows Noor as a 'regular' young woman who deals with multiple cultural values, realities and conflicts as she develops her own hybrid identity.
Why we like it: Set in America, where there is a great deal of ignorance about and animosity towards Islam and Muslims, Ninjabi creates the potential for understanding and learning. For example, Noor's best friend Ally, a non-Muslim, is depicted as helping Noor keep to her fasts, or challenge other girls who label Noor a 'terrorist'. Moreover, the hijab has been constructed in many Western societies as a symbol of women's oppression and control. Ninjabi effectively challenges this idea by portraying Noor and other hijab-wearing girls as strong, quirky and funny. Ninjabi portrays the women wearing the hijab as more important than the hijab itself. The comic strip also strongly speaks out against Islamophobia in a non-threatening manner that only cartoon characters and comics can.
Category: Women's rights visualisations worldwide.
“I expected to learn about visualisation. I learned a lot more, got creative and inspired, and had lots of fun!”
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