Call For Papers: The Girl in the Hijab (Girlhood Studies)

Young Lee Discussion


An Interdisciplinary Journal


Call for Papers

The Girl in the Hijab


Although hijab has long been a Western cultural fixation, in the past few years the girl in the hijab has been in the sociopolitical spotlight. With the hijab being the most visible way to identify and be identified as Muslim, those who wear it experience the world in unique ways. The experiences of girls and young women in hijab are undoubtedly shaped by intersectional experiences (Collins 2015) under interlocking systems of domination (hooks 2015).


In part enacted by Islamophobia that operates as a global meta-narrative and through localized discourses, laws, and systems (Bakali 2016), violence against women and girls in hijab is further entangled in being gendered; it operates through power and discourse institutionalized by laws such as Bill 21 in Quebec and similar measures in France. Such institutional acts wed “save the Muslim girl” narratives that position Muslim girls and women as oppressed victims in need of rescue, to the controlling images of the suspicious Other in the form of the “save us from the Muslim girl” (Saleh 2021: 2) narratives. Violence has also been enacted overtly through hate crimes, evidenced most recently in the Canadian attacks on mainly young Black hijabi women in Alberta and the murder of a Muslim family in Ontario, as well as through violence in schools such as happened in Virginia, US, when a peer, in assaulting a Muslim girl, pulled off her hijab. Research on Islamophobia to date has been heavily focused on experiences of Muslim youth in the contexts of imperialism and white supremacy, while intersectional perspectives that consider the unique and nuanced experiences of hijabi girlhood are scarcer. Although the hijabi girl is often the location whereon white supremacist, imperialist, and patriarchal violence is enacted, she is also a possible site of resistance in her countering expressions of power through everyday actions and activist engagement.


In this special issue of Girlhood Studies, we invite articles based on a range of methodological approaches to investigate the multidimensional, interdisciplinary, and intersectional experiences of girls and young women who wear the hijab and/ or identify as hijabi. We particularly encourage articles that investigate hijabi girls as political actors who practice resistance to systemic domination. Articles may include empirical research, case studies, autoethnographic experiences, and artistic representations in addition to theoretical or methodological insights. Along with conventional articles and visual essays, alternative contributions such as a very short screenplay or piece of fiction, poetry, or lyrics will be considered, as will material produced by those who identify as girls and young women.


Articles are invited to respond to questions such as:

  • How do the intersections of gender and race shape girls’ experiences of wearing the hijab in various contexts?
  • How do dominant political forces (patriarchy, white supremacy, imperialism, colonialism, capitalism) and their intersections shape the Muslim and hijabi girl experience?
  • What are the complex “controlling images” (see the title of Patricia Hill Collins’s (1991) work) of hijabi girls that operate in the social world, and what are the implications for Muslim girls and women?
  • How do Muslim and hijabi girls practice resistance and broadly defined activism (Vanner and Dugal 2020)?
  • How do Muslim and hijabi girls experience and resist gender-based and sexual violence?
  • How does the narrative of the “good Muslim” (Saleh 2019: 243) affect hijabi girls’ lives?
  • How are Muslim girls (hijabi and non-hijabi) at various intersecting identities portrayed across different media (social, TV, film) platforms?
  • What types of images and narratives of hijabi girls dominate in influencer culture across various social media platforms?
  • What are the unique experiences of girls who wear the hijab in education systems and/or in health systems?


This special issue is to be guest edited by Salsabel Almanssori and Muna Saleh. Please direct inquiries to Salsabel Almanssori at


Salsabel Almanssori, who has worked as a middle-school teacher for the past seven years, is a doctoral candidate and instructor at the Faculty of Education and the Department of Women’s and Gender Studies at the University of Windsor. In her interdisciplinary dissertation research, she uses narrative inquiry to investigate the intersections between and among feminist theory, teacher education, and gender-based and sexual violence. Her most recent peer-reviewed articles shed light on girls’ use of digital public pedagogy as a medium of resistance to rape culture in a post #MeToo world, and student perspectives on gender-based violence in education. Hijabi girlhood is an integral part of her personal lived experience.


Muna Saleh is an Assistant Professor in the Faculty of Education at Concordia University of Edmonton (CUE), former elementary and secondary school teacher, and the author of Stories We Live and Grow By: (Re)Telling Our Experiences as Muslim Mothers and Daughters (2019). Drawing on her experiences as an intergenerational survivor of violent Palestinian displacement and as a caregiver to a child with a dis/ability, her most recent research includes a narrative inquiry alongside Muslim mothers of children with dis/abilities who arrived in Canada with refugee experiences.


Article Submission

Abstracts are due by 15 June 2022 and should be sent to


Full manuscripts are due by 15 November 2022. Authors should provide a cover page giving brief biographical details (up to 100 words), institutional affiliation(s) and full contact information, including an email address.


Articles may be no longer than 6,500 words including the abstract (up to 125 words), keywords (6 to 8 in alphabetical order), notes, captions and tables, acknowledgments (if any), biographical details (taken from the cover page), and references. Images in a text count for 200 words each. Authors are responsible for securing copyright for any images used.


Girlhood Studies: An Interdisciplinary Journal, follows Berghahn’s preferred house style, a modified Chicago Style. Please refer to the Style Guide online:


For more information, please see



Bakali, Naved. 2016. Islamophobia: Understanding Anti-Muslim Racism Through the Lived Experiences of Muslim Youth. Rotterdam: Sense Publishers.


Collins, Patricia Hill. 1991. “Controlling Images and Black Women’s Oppression.” Seeing Ourselves: Classic, Contemporary, and Cross-Cultural Readings in Sociology 4: 266–273.


Collins, Patricia Hill. 2015. “Intersectionality’s Definitional Dilemmas.” Annual Review of Sociology 41: 1–20.


hooks, bell. 2015. “Feminism is Fun!” The Bell Hooks Institute.


Saleh, Muna. 2019. Stories We Live and Grow By: (Re)telling Our Experiences as Muslim Mothers and Daughters. Bradford, ON: Demeter Press.


Saleh, Muna. 2021. “The Urgency of (Explicitly) Teaching Against Islamophobia: Guest Editor’s Introduction.” Annals of Social Studies Education Research for Teachers 2 (1): 1–7.


Vanner, Catherine, and Anuradha Dugal. 2020. “Personal, Powerful, Political: Activist Networks by, for, and with Girls and Young Women.” Girlhood Studies: An Interdisciplinary Journal 13 (2): vii–xv.