As-salam alaykum. I read this article in the Guardian Weekly this week and it seemed an obvious one to share. Many of our friends share the western view of Islam and the stereotypes associated with Islamic women in particular. This article probably won't change their view but I found it interesting.
Having lived in the Middle East and having had a joyful experience working with both Arabic men and women there I read the article and felt that admiration again that Kristiane Backer expresses (her quote is down below).
Anyway - it's a great article about western women converting to Islam...
Some pull quotes from the women being interviewed:
I stopped seeing [Islamic practices] as restrictions on personal freedom and realised they were ways of achieving self-control. (Ioni Sullivan - pictured above)
[The headscarf] can attract negative attention from people who stereotype "visibly" Muslim women as oppressed or terrorist. (Anita Nayyar)
The Muslims I met touched me profoundly through their generosity, dignity and readiness to sacrifice for others. (Kristiane Backer)
Love and peace - Wozza