Women Leaving Islam – with Maryam Namazie
(Zoom details to follow)
We will show part of this powerful new film in which six ex-Muslim women activists share their moving stories of growing up in Muslim families and Muslim-majority countries and the violence, loss and shunning they faced because of their apostasy. This will be followed by a Q&A session with Maryam Namazie.
In the film women talk about everything from tearing their hijab on door handles as a child, wearing a burkini on a beach in Italy, wanting to scream their atheism in Mecca during Hajj, losing custody of a child after a husband’s accusations of blasphemy, reporting a violent fundamentalist father, forging a male guardian’s signature in order to flee their country and being shunned for defending gay rights.
The brave women: Fauzia Ilyas, Fay Rahman, Halima Salat, Mimzy Vidz, Rana Ahmad and Zara Kay reside/have resided in Australia, Britain, Germany and the Netherlands. They are from backgrounds as diverse as Bangladeshi, British, Egyptian/Moroccan, Saudi, Somali/Kenyan, Pakistani and Tanzanian.
We will be joined by Maryam Namazie, Executive Producer of the film and an Iranian-born writer and activist. She is the spokesperson of One Law for All and the Council of Ex-Muslims of Britain. Until recently, she hosted a weekly television programme, broadcast in Iran in Persian and English’ called Bread and Roses.
In addition to producing the film she published The Woman’s Quran; organised the first ever Apostasy Day and Atheist Day with an international coalition of ex-Muslim groups. She organised the largest gatherings of ex-Muslims in history, including at De Balie’s Celebrating Dissent; led a topless protest at Pride London in 2017 in defence of LGBT rights with placards saying “Allah is Gay” and “LGBT rights are universal”.
She also took part in a nude protest in defence of women’s rights in the Middle East and North Africa; initiated a Day to Stand with Bangladesh’s Bloggers and Activists; an International Day to Defend Amina and the Nude Photo Revolutionary Calendar 2012-2013, and helped launch the Manifesto for a Free and Secular Middle East and North Africa. In 2006, Maryam signed signed a statement of 12 writers against Islamic totalitarianism along with Salman Rushdie, Taslima Nasrin and others