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Saïda Douki Dedieu, Hager Karray

The Veil on the Couch Hidden ramifications unveiled

Saïda Douki Dedieu is emeritus professor of psychiatry in the department of medicine in Tunis, and associate professor in the department of medicine in Lyon. She is also the author of Les Femmes et la discrimination [Women and Discrimination]… and collaborated [ok?] on La Folle histoire des idées folles en psychiatrie [The Mad History of Mad Ideas in Psychiatry].
Hager Karray is a psychoanalyst at the Centre hospitalier de Savoie (Chambéry).
For the past thirty years, the headscarf of Muslim women has continued to elicit violent polemics that express a deep concern related to the potential danger associated with this symbol of religious radicalization. The recurrence of the debate indicates the failure of repressive measures that, in the name of secularism, have been put into place to halt an increase in the visibility of Islamic fundamentalism. It above all indicates a mutual lack of understanding on the part of the two sides involved, both of which are trapped in a true dialogue of the deaf.

The authors of this book, a psychiatrist and a psychoanalyst, help us understand the sources of the threat that the headscarf represents for some, and what removing it means for others, by inviting those involved to the couch of psychiatrists attuned to the subconscious. Knowing that all clothing conveys a message, the authors decode that of the so-called Islamic headscarf. It expresses the fact that throughout time and in all cultures men have forced women to wear headscarves as a way to diminish their power, but that the recent trend to adopt the headscarf today might in fact be a means for women to liberate themselves from male power. But what truths does it reveal unbeknownst to the one who wears it? What does it reveal, and what does it hide?