MyWorld: Headless Schoolgirls

I thought the title of this post might get your attention! Saudi public schools require all boys to dress in the traditional white thobe (long dress) and all girls wear some type of conservative uniform. When girls reach a certain age, they must also then wear the abaya (long black cloak) over their clothing to and from school, plus they must cover their hair with the hijab (scarf). All store mannequins in Saudi Arabia are headless. From what I understand, the reason why mannequin heads are prohibited is because it would be considered a form of idolatry, according to the religious interpretations here. So that also means that there are no statues in the human form either. And animals too. I have seen some sculptures of body parts, but never a complete person or animal. If you would like to see more examples of this phenomenom, here are some previous posts I did on the subject: Headless Mannequins; Confusing Contradictions; Tall Camel Sculpture; The Eye; The Fist; Hungry Horses; and The Supplication.
Well, That’s My World for this week! That’s My World! offers a unique glimpse at life all over our planet. Take a peek at other people’s lives from all over the world by visiting That’s My World!

About SusieOfArabia

American woman now living in hubby's homeland of Saudi Arabia
This entry was posted in Clothing, Culture, Odd or Unusual, Saudi Arabia, Shopping and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

16 Responses to MyWorld: Headless Schoolgirls

  1. Chiara says:

    I am one of those who really loves these uniforms. Interesting, the headless issue, since the Museum of on which I did a post “Saudi Women’s Work: Domestic Artists to Working Artisans” uses mannequins with heads but no distinguishing features. Probably as you said the context is important and perhaps online the heads are less offensive than off.

  2. omer yousaf says:

    i recommends this type of showing uniform in pakistan

  3. Very interesting, thank you for sharing. Cute mannequins, regardless!

  4. Mark Kreider says:

    I walked by a scene very much like this on 32nd street in Manhattan yesterday!

  5. Dina says:

    I’ve never seen such pretty school uniforms.

  6. B Squared says:

    I always learn something on your posts.

  7. ladyfi says:

    Amazing photo.. apart from the surprise of not seeing any heads, I can only gasp in amazement at those uniforms. They’re more like ball gowns!

  8. Very interesting! It reminds me of a December posting which I titled “Headless for the holidays” – headless mannequins which are more rare around here!

  9. ewok1993 says:

    I wouldn’t mind these uniforms. I even like the light or powder blue color.

  10. Fishing Guy says:

    Susie: Is their a reason for them being headless or is that the norm because they are for the girls?

  11. carolynUSA says:

    Very interesting aspects of a culture so different from where I live. You seem so knowledgeable and respectful and able to adjust so comfortably…and, that I respect. Your photography is wonderful and tells such a story.

    • Thanks, Carolyn and Sylvia – I do try to be respectful, but believe me, there are many people who get offended by what I write and post. I have ranted on occasion, especially when it comes to women’s issues here that I have a hard time accepting and conforming to. Thank you for seeing that I am just here to share my impressions – some good, some bad, and some ugly – without trying to defame or insult.

  12. I never fail to be amazed by your posts and equally amazed at the difference in our worlds. And I do admire you so much for adapting as well as you have, I’m afraid I wouldn’t do anywhere near as well. Well, and there’s nothing like headless schoolgirls to give you a new appreciation of both our worlds!!! Have a great week, Susie!


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