The power of a woman

Photo courtesy of Jaryam Last week I wrote about the blue bra revolution, an extraordinary response to a scene in … Continued

Photo courtesy of Jaryam

Last week I wrote about the blue bra revolution, an extraordinary response to a scene in Egypt where a young woman was beaten, stomped on, and stripped down to her turquoise blue bra during a demonstration.

In the weeks that followed, the blue bra became a symbol in Egypt for the emancipation of women from religious oppression. Activists replaced the eagle on the flag with a blue bra. The hashtag #bluebra became a rallying cry against the government.

I suggested that women everywhere wear one when feeling oppressed or needing extra confidence, particularly around men. Over the past week, I have heard from women who, like me, have bought blue bras for themselves or others. The shop where I bought mine has even created a blue bra window as sales boom.

The blue bra I have worn to several meetings makes me feel powerful and confident. It has become almost like a talisman or amulet. It keeps away bad feelings. It brings luck in the same way that ballplayers may feel they perform better when wearing certain numbers or carrying charms, or soldiers feel when carrying pictures of their loved ones or a religious symbol into battle.

My father was in the Army on the front lines during Korea. He was nicknamed Buffalo Bill, his regiment was called “The Buffalos” and he gave every one of his men a Buffalo nickel to carry with them at all times. Today, if you run into a “Buffalo,” he (or she) will always have a Buffalo nickel in their pocket.

I wear a Buffalo Nickel on a chain around my neck. It reminds me of my father, a warrior, and that he always vanquished his enemy. The blue bra works the same way. When one wears it, either literally or spiritually, you feel there is nothing that can stop you. And there isn’t.

About

Sally Quinn Sally Quinn is the founding editor of OnFaith.
  • RevMark2U

    I do believe this particular symbolism will have a short life. I think it conflates the status of white privileged women in the U.S. (even though they remain suppressed by many a glass ceiling) with observant Muslim women elsewhere (where the suppressions truly are oppressions of the highest order), and misunderstands Islam in the home.

    The crime of the stompers was heinous. But I believe you do well to check with other Muslim women about your post, and there are plenty in DC with whom to check. The rest of your discussion sounds more like superstition than like hefty religion or any kind of spirituality.

  • tony55398

    I can remember when women were burning their bras. What happened?

  • KAlab

    Does anyone know how the “girl with the blue bra” is doing after being assaulted in Egypt? I worry for her.

  • KAlab

    I was wondering if anyone knew what happened to the girl with the blue bra in Egypt. Was she seriously hurt? Is she ok now? KL

  • edbyronadams

    Many women figured out that early liberation was about more than acting more like a man.

  • plattitudes

    I took the liberty to rewrite this slightly. If it had been written as it appears below, it would be mocked here on the WaPo forums. And yet, the above article will likely be lauded as an inspirational piece. Still, I had fun…

    Last week I wrote about the [religion of the cross], an extraordinary response to a scene in [Palestine] where a young [man] was beaten, [spit] on, and stripped down to [his underclothes and hung on a cross].

    In the [years] that followed, the [cross] became a symbol [worldwide] for the emancipation of [all men] from [sin]. Activists replaced the symbols on [their nation's] flags with a [cross]. The [cross] became a rallying cry against the [Roman] government.

    I suggested that [people] everywhere wear one when feeling oppressed or needing extra confidence, particularly around [sin]. Over the past week, I have heard from [people] who, like me, have bought [a cross] for themselves or others. The shop where I bought mine has even created a [cross] window as sales boom.

    The [cross] I have worn to several meetings makes me feel powerful and confident. It has become almost like a talisman or amulet. It keeps away bad feelings. It brings luck in the same way that ballplayers may feel they perform better when wearing certain numbers or carrying charms, or soldiers feel when carrying pictures of their loved ones or a religious symbol into battle.

    My father was in the Army on the front lines during Korea. He was nicknamed Buffalo Bill, his regiment was called “The Buffalos” and he gave every one of his men a Buffalo nickel to carry with them at all times. Today, if you run into a “Buffalo,” he (or she) will always have a Buffalo nickel in their pocket.

    I wear a Buffalo Nickel on a chain around my neck. It reminds me of my father, a warrior, and that he always vanquished his enemy. The [cross]works the same way. When one wears it, either literally or spiritually, you feel there is nothing that can stop you. And there isn’t.

  • Mariem991

    Really? Thats all it takes? Thanks so much! I’m on my way to Victoria’s Secret……The Post should be embarrassed to continue to print this trite stuff. Help!

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