Understand its significance before you wear it? (shemagh/kafia)

January 02, 2008 @ 13:21:50
I just spent two weeks of my winter break in Dubai with two of my close friends Rami and Hashim. Rami is Palestinian and Hashim is from the U.A.E itself. The topic of the shemagh/kafiya worn in the non-arab world came up and I thought their opinions on the matter were pretty interesting. They explained to me how disappointed they were by naive dumbasses who wear the scarf just because of its design. I always knew the smemagh was a regional figure of the middle east but Hashim explained to me that it is considered to be an extremely cherished symbol of identification and culture. Rami went on to tell me how it also came to represent Palestine
January 02, 2008 @ 13:46:31
If someone was wearing something that originated in Jamaica representing their struggle and didn't know what it meant I wouldn't care really. I do hate when people wear or do certain things and they don't know the meaning behind it, but I can't think of examples. But I just don't think I would care that much if someone did what I mentioned before.

@KOEsher INSTAGRAM & TWITTER

January 02, 2008 @ 13:49:36
^^ yeh like those ppl who wear dem Livestrong bands time ago, for a fashion accessory, even if they were related to helping with cancer.
January 02, 2008 @ 13:54:47
im not sure if this fits but you guys talkin about like peole wearing che shirts
January 02, 2008 @ 13:55:57
oh and are those scarf things the same think those chicks wear over their head? i dont kow
January 02, 2008 @ 13:57:29
EddxEthik, I think that is a LITTLE different mainly because buying/wearing the bracelets was supporting a cause, not exploiting a struggle.
January 02, 2008 @ 13:58:33
dreadlocks
red, gold, and green
supreme
January 02, 2008 @ 13:58:54
i agree, i've always stayed away from shemaghs, not only to do i think they're fugly (sorry? ) but like you say people dont even know the meaning of wearing one.

(p.s, sorry to devalue your thread but that girl is fuckin hot)

*^ word to chepz
January 02, 2008 @ 14:01:16
^^ lmao, and karl_winslow, i guess ur right, but what i tried to point out was that most people bought just because it was a trend, not because they supported the cause.
January 02, 2008 @ 14:07:42
Arab kids at my school wear shemaghs like gang flags. Hang em out of their pocket, put em around their neck.
January 02, 2008 @ 14:10:51
i really fucking hate fags that rock che shirts.

rocking his face on a tshirt basically went against everything he believed in.
January 02, 2008 @ 14:27:06
^^ who the fuck rocks M-65s?
January 02, 2008 @ 14:28:02
my best friend is muslim and bought me mine in palestine. and he is the most religious person ive ever met in my life and he had no problem picking me up one.

and i have a history degree and am fluent in fus'ha dialect of arabic. so i feel its ok for me to wear it.

Al-hamdu lillah. Allahu akbar.
January 02, 2008 @ 14:29:11
this is equivalent to saying dont rock M-65s or g-1's unless you served in the army

Ill never wear one myself so other ppl can do as they please...just keep in mind you look like a trendhopping dumbass, odds are half the people wearing one don't even know what its called


well... NEVER wear mil gear with any kind of insignia on them unless you served. the m-65 and g-1 have been accepted into mens fashion, much like pea coats and blazers, which were military in the beginning.
January 02, 2008 @ 14:31:52
the m65 topic is totally different, it was made for a material purpose not spiritual

if you think like that you might aswell not wear sneakers unless you are an athlete..
January 02, 2008 @ 14:36:05
omg..if i got to know every belief behind every trend. My head will explode. Sorry i guess i got more important thing to worry about instead of does my scarf or my shirt mean something? Is it hurting other ppl's culture?
January 02, 2008 @ 14:38:41
Well with the shemagh itself, it isn't identified solely w/ the Palenstinian struggle and in fact different colors/pattern shemaghs have different cultural/political ties. Still some colors and patterns dont really have such ties and many people (i.e. those in the military in desert conditions, be them arab or american) wear it not b/c of any cultural symbolism or as a fashion statement but rather due to the fact that it has great utility in the desert (it protects from sun,sand and wind but is not so heavy as to make the wearer too hot).

Unless someone is rocking a scarf that has a political affiliiation i dont think its bad that americans are taking on fashion cues from the middle east, i mean t-shirts, jeans, etc all are Western inventions (tshirts were developed in the US military!! ) and most Arab youth have no problem wearing a garment that originated in the US military and is strongly associated with the west.

And even in other cultures, you see ppl wearing fashion w/o knowing much about it. Look at European hiphop videos and see all the new eras and shit they rock when we all know they dont have a clue who plays for the Phillies, Yankees, etc.
January 02, 2008 @ 14:40:12
^^and thats why i dont wear new eras anymore... used to rock a NY fitted to show my love for east coast skateboarding, but i cant even do that anymore.
January 02, 2008 @ 14:41:01
^true, there really are 2 sides to this coin[/poignance]

but i think we can agree they are ugly blushing

*and new eras are ugly too
January 02, 2008 @ 14:44:48
oh... fucking rosarys. i hate that.
January 02, 2008 @ 14:46:36
w0w it seem to me u guys are really extreme. Maybe i am just into it for the look n the fashion side of things.
I wear New era yankee & mets fitted cuz im from NY but I do have SF, Philly & etc.
Regards to Shemag, i wear it since it look like the whole houndstooth & herringbone print. This is america, the last thing i should worry about is what is the reason behind this whole LOOK.
January 02, 2008 @ 14:46:42
there was a topic on that earlier, that defintely would offend some people..,

tommy, you're goin too deep, i dont think the point is to assess every piece of clothing and analyse every connotation...
January 02, 2008 @ 14:47:08
wait.... ppl actually rock rosaries as a fashion accessory?? that's hilarious.

And tommyrocks you should have some idea as to what you're wearing. I mean you wouldn't rock a swatstika on your arm or a confederate flag on your shirt if you thought it looked cool would you?
January 02, 2008 @ 14:51:48
there was a topic on that earlier, that defintely would offend some people..,

tommy, you're goin too deep, i dont think the point is to assess every piece of clothing and analyse every connotation...

The reason i bought it up is bcuz cheep said he dont wear new era anymore because of whatevers.
January 02, 2008 @ 14:52:04
Well with the shemagh itself, it isn't identified solely w/ the Palenstinian struggle and in fact different colors/pattern shemaghs have different cultural/political ties. Still some colors and patterns dont really have such ties and many people (i.e. those in the military in desert conditions, be them arab or american) wear it not b/c of any cultural symbolism or as a fashion statement but rather due to the fact that it has great utility in the desert (it protects from sun,sand and wind but is not so heavy as to make the wearer too hot).

Unless someone is rocking a scarf that has a political affiliiation i dont think its bad that americans are taking on fashion cues from the middle east, i mean t-shirts, jeans, etc all are Western inventions (tshirts were developed in the US military!! ) and most Arab youth have no problem wearing a garment that originated in the US military and is strongly associated with the west.

And even in other cultures, you see ppl wearing fashion w/o knowing much about it. Look at European hiphop videos and see all the new eras and shit they rock when we all know they dont have a clue who plays for the Phillies, Yankees, etc.


You have a very good point on your hands, but do you truly believe that the American cultural connotation of a t-shirt is the same to that of a kafia in the Arab world?
January 02, 2008 @ 14:53:16
wait.... ppl actually rock rosaries as a fashion accessory?? that's hilarious.

And tommyrocks you should have some idea as to what you're wearing. I mean you wouldn't rock a swatstika on your arm or a confederate flag on your shirt if you thought it looked cool would you?


i wont wear it but i am sure someone esle would. What can you really do about it? Start a movement to end all trend because its stand for something and you have no idea what it is.
January 02, 2008 @ 14:53:27
true, i think a more suitable counterpart would be a rosary as chepz says
January 02, 2008 @ 15:06:25
You have a very good point on your hands, but do you truly believe that the American cultural connotation of a t-shirt is the same to that of a kafia in the Arab world?


no, in terms of the magnitude of a cultural connection it's different but the principle is essentially the same. And in some cases American brands and fashion are strongly associated w/ the West (i.e. in Iran ppl can get locked up for wearing Western garments). I'm sure 50 years ago the t-shirt was even more strongly associated w/ the Western world but over time those that opposed it have largely given in and gotten over it.

And tommyrocks i'm not saying that ppl have to limit their wardrobe to their own culture, i'm just saying it's good to know what you're rocking before you wear it (i doubt you'd rock a PLO scarf in the Jewish sector of Jerusalem, for your own safety as well as to not look culturally ignorant or intentionally provocative).
January 02, 2008 @ 15:22:58
And tommyrocks i'm not saying that ppl have to limit their wardrobe to their own culture, i'm just saying it's good to know what you're rocking before you wear it (i doubt you'd rock a PLO scarf in the Jewish sector of Jerusalem, for your own safety as well as to not look culturally ignorant or intentionally provocative).


This is exactly what I was getting at, and your avvy is making me really hungry.
January 02, 2008 @ 15:33:15
And tommyrocks i'm not saying that ppl have to limit their wardrobe to their own culture, i'm just saying it's good to know what you're rocking before you wear it (i doubt you'd rock a PLO scarf in the Jewish sector of Jerusalem, for your own safety as well as to not look culturally ignorant or intentionally provocative).

oh most def, i aint gona be rockin red bandana at blood neighborhood.
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