A Blog by the Editor of The Middle East Journal

Putting Middle Eastern Events in Cultural and Historical Context

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Women's Dress and Earthquakes

Okay, I've been avoiding this story because it seemed 1) stereotyping; 2) using a fringe statement to demean an entire community; and 3) picking the low-hanging fruit. But since even BBC is running it, I guess I should note that a "senior Iranian cleric" has noted that immodestly dressed women cause earthquakes.

Sediqi is one of the more inflammatory preachers — he's an interim Friday Prayer Leader in Tehran and has the rank of Hojatrolislam, which may count as a "senior cleric" but not necessarily as a mujtahid or someone who can teach in his own right.

Respectful theological question to the Hojatolislam: If Iranian women showing an occasional wrist or ankle are causing massive earthquakes, why hasn't the French Riviera sunk into the sea by now?


Jillian said...

Clearly someone needs to do some research as to how this magical power can be harnessed for good.

Michael Collins Dunn said...


I'm thinking of a spinoff: Charlie's Angels: Earthquake Squad, or something like that.