The Tonsure And The Headscarf

The Mormons believe that your family group stays with you for eternity. All members of a family must then be saved or damned together, which suggests either a peculiar coordination of spiritual states, or else that everyone rides the patriarch’s coattails to heaven or hell, whichever he deserves. God cannot, therefore, be regarding the other family members as independent beings, but only as annexes or property of the patriarch. That would actually accord with the meaning of the Latin familia, namely household, a man’s slaves.

In the contemporary European fuss over the iniquity of hijab, people have forgotten two things: first, that there are plenty of Christian fundamentalists who wear the headscarf too, and second, that in the days of US slavery, women of colour wore the headscarf to denote servitude. One wonders what if any connection there may therefore be between the Christian headscarf and the Peculiar Institution in the western world’s most volubly Christian nation. In Ancient Rome, the badge of slavery for men was the tonsure, which was then adopted by the Christians, most of whom were originally slaves, to show that they were kristodouloi, slaves or servants of Christ. If the female tonsure in the Old South was the headscarf, therefore, modern fundamentalists may be using it not, as Muslims would, to prevent the triggering of male lust by the sight of hair, but to denote a symbolic servitude. But then to whom – to God or to their husbands?

Posted on March 1, 2010 at 08:48 by Hugo Grinebiter · Permalink
In: THE LONGEST CON, 'Family Values'

Leave a Reply