The relationship between body image and the Muslim religious dress code of South African Indian Muslim female adolescents
This study focuses on the relationship between body image and the Muslim religious dress code of South African Indian Muslim female adolescents. During the literature search conducted by the researcher no research specifically on body image of female adolescents when wearing the Muslim dress code in South Africa could be found. South African Indian Muslim adolescents are faced with challenges in a changing environment. In the aftermath of 9/11 South African Indian Muslim adolescent females are undergoing changes on how they view the Muslim religious dress code and the impact it has on their body image. A new Muslim identity depicted by the Muslim religious dress code is adopted. The goal of this study was to determine how the Muslim adolescent female views the relationship between her body image and wearing the Muslim religious dress code. A phenomenological Gestalt, field theory approach was followed within a qualitative case study design. Furthermore, The Social Identity Theory served as additional theoretical framework. Analysis was done using Creswell’s application of Tesch’s Method. The participants for this study consisted of a sample size of six South African Indian Muslim female adolescents between the ages of 14 and 16. Of note, all the female participants attended the same school in Johannesburg and all participants wore the Muslim religious dress code to school. The qualitative data were collected in the form of unstructured in-depth interviews and projection-type photos with the participants. The researcher’s objective was to understand and interpret the meanings the participants gave to their perceptions and experiences, which was further supported through participant observation, self-reflective notes and field and observational notes. The interviews were recorded on tape and DVD. Recordings were transcribed verbatim, analysis of contents and the data was then coded into categories from which themes and sub-themes emerged. Central themes and patterns of the experiences were interpreted and analysed within the context of the study. The researcher ensured that data was gathered from different data sources as described and data was considered from multiple dimensions to ensure triangulation. The findings of the study revealed that the Indian Muslim female adolescent was able to negotiate the wearing of the Muslim religious dress code with confidence and this resulted in a positive body image.
- Humanities