How #SouthAfrican women are reclaiming the #headscarf .
#African women have worn headscarves for many years for #religious, #cultural reasons & even as a fashion statement but they were traditionally worn by older, usually married women.
They are a common feature in ceremonies such as #weddings & even #funerals. .
Many also love the convenience of it - it can be a quick fix for a bad hair day.
And young South African women are embracing the #doek (as it is known in #Afrikaans).
One of the most popular forms of headscarves across #Africa is the #gele from #WestAfrica. It can be incredibly elaborate & is usually starched so the material becomes stiff to hold its shape.
In #Nigeria how a #Yoruba woman wears her headscarf can be a sign of her #maritalstatus - if worn with the ends facing down its means a woman is married & if worn with the ends up, she is single. Here in South Africa, there is a necessary debate about the doek in the corporate world. .
Cue the #socialmedia storm. .
The hashtags #RespekTheDoek & #DoekTheNewsroom trended for a number of days here last week with many people - including men & even women from all racial groups - wearing a doek to show their support for the young journalist.
The channel, while explaining that its dress code does not allow on-air journalists to wear headgear to work, has said it is now reviewing that policy. .
But many believe the channel's reaction showed how the workplace has not changed with the times.
Some say it shows an intolerance to #blackculture. . "We are, after all, in South Africa where we have to be sensitive to everyone's culture and not just of those that don't wear doeks," says former entertainment writer Itumeleng Motuba. . "But don't forget that the workplace also insinuates that #black #naturalhair is unprofessional. It seems looking African is #unprofessional, which is rather ludicrous." .
Kgothatso Maditse, a poet, agrees. "It just goes to show just how far we are from accepting anything African if it doesn't have the 'right' stamp of approval. The longer we keep avoiding these topics, the longer we prolong & pacify an obviously stale way of thinking,” she says.