Burka, chador or headscarf?

According to Islam, a woman should cover her hair. But there is nothing in the religion to say that a woman should cover her whole face or eyes.

However it is traditional in Afghanistan for most women to wear a burka, a garment that covers them from head to toe, when they leave the house. Others wear a chador, which is a large piece of fabric, and a few only wear a small headscarf.

“I wear a chador, because according to our tradition and religion, it is not suitable for a woman to show her hair or face to strangers. At home I just wear a headscarf,”
Makhfi, 14

“I’m wearing a white veil, which I got at the orphanage where I live. It’s beautiful,”
Malalai, 7


“I have worn a burka since the age of 14. All the women in my village do. It’s our tradition and culture, and we are proud of our burkas. I feel safe in my burka,”
Freista, 20


“I don’t like wearing a burka. I think a headscarf is enough. The burka looks a bit dull. I have headscarves in different colours - today I’m wearing a red one. That’s a happy colour,”
Zarafshan, 16

Text: Jesper Huor
Photos: Makan E-Rahmati


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