headscarf emoji

German Teen Campaigns For Headscarf Emoji

By Stephen Fuchs on Email @StephenWFuchs

If you were to talk about emoji five years ago, most people would give you a puzzled expression, but today it is a common word and the faces, animals, vegetables and oh so many others are now used to help us add meaning to the text conversations that have replaced voice and human interactions. With each new update on our phones there are new emoji waiting to be used, and while most of the new additions are made to offer diversity, a 15-year-old girl in Germany is pushing for a notable absence — women in headscarfs.

headpiece also represents women of other faiths

Now some of you may immediately look at this as negative, or some evil Islamic scheme, but Rayouf Alhumedhi, a high school student living in Berlin, has some interesting insight into its diverse use that doesn’t immediately make it a Muslim-only emoji.

While women wearing headscarfs are traditionally seen as representing a Muslim, Alhumedhi argues that the headpiece also represents women of other faiths and even cancer patients.

Most of our phones already have a diverse selection of religious symbols represented, including places of worship (mosques, shrines and the Muslim Kaaba) and symbols (cross, menorah, prayer beads and the white dove of peace). Other than Santa, who is a stretch in terms of representing Christianity, the only other person emoji that carries any religious symbolism are the boy and man wearing a turban.

Germany may be in the midst of a public clash between many of the Muslim refugees, but that hasn’t stopped this girl from pushing forward.

Before taking a side in the argument, take a look at Alhumedhi’s official proposal sent to the Unicode Consortium that is embedded below:

Sources: scribd

Stephen Fuchs
Stephen founded German Pulse and LGBT Germany out of a passion to introduce Americans to a Germany that goes beyond beer and polka (although with enough beer he has been known to polka it up a bit). He's a coffee addict, lover of wine and good times, a hit in the kitchen and editor of TV commercials. You can follow him on Twitter (@StephenWFuchs) to find out a lot more.
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