Sign In / Up

Add contribution as a guest

Your email will not be displayed publicly
Benefit of signing in/signing up to personalize comment

Comment as a guest

Your email will not be displayed publicly
Benefit of signing in/signing up to personalize comment

Login

Not a member Register   Forgot Password
or connect using
 

Email

 

Rudaw

Kurdistan

Miss Kurdistan pageant raises questions about women's role in society

By Glenn Field 7/10/2016
The winner, Zhalia Sirwan, is a 20-year old college student from Sulaimani. Photo: Rudaw video
The winner, Zhalia Sirwan, is a 20-year old college student from Sulaimani. Photo: Rudaw video

ERBIL, Kurdistan Region—The third annual Miss Kurdistan beauty pageant raises questions of what is beauty, feminism, and the role of women in Kurdish society. 


“I think that women are beautiful and they make the world more beautiful,” Maria Manousaki, producer of the film Cloudy Sunday and member of the pageant’s jury, told Rudaw. “No matter what age or necessity and Kurdish women are especially beautiful.” 

“Beauty is a word that has a lot of connotations and symbolisms and practicalities so I am waiting to listen,” Manousaki added. 

“The facial and the intellectual and the psychic and the practicality: how is the beauty used? It is a beautiful county, Kurdistan. What do I do for my country? What do I do for the world? What can I do? A prize not only gives you honor but a road to do things,” she explained.

The event was hosted by Babylon FM’s Saz Aso and Noor Matti. Matti praised Kurdish women to the 400 people in attendance at the event, “In Kurdistan, I love how families are really close together and the mother is the head of the family.” 


Neshuan Zato, one of the event’s organizers, said society is changing, “particularly for women… for freedom, for using her rights, for equality, for everything.”

Another member of the jury, Angelina Miran, known as “Angel B” on Babylon FM, explained that the women are judged on charisma and personality. 

“I think it’s something that shines,” Miran told Rudaw before the pageant began. “It’s something inside, like a light. You can see in their eyes. I had the pleasure to interview some of the contestants and some have more of a glow than others. This is really their time to shine.” 

Miran believes that the event is a step in the right direction with respect to women’s role in Kurdish society. 

“This is a step in the right direction. I think it is a positive sign. All the girls have a strong sense of women’s power and empowering women in Kurdistan. It’s nice for them to get glammed up and events like this are positive. I think the girls would stand just as good a chance in America as they would here.” 

Organizers of the event also hoped to show to the world that life in the Kurdistan Region goes on, despite the financial crisis and the frontline with the Islamic State just down the road.

“We are trying to show the world that we are still living,” Zato told Rudaw. “We are not just the people who are fighting and sitting in the problems. We are now showing the world that we are living normal lives. We have our social lives and everything. So we want to show the world that they can come here. They can join us. They can do business here. They can come for tourism. That is the target of this event.”


The pageant was sponsored by the Kurdistan Tourism Board and Babylon Company. Babylon manager Salwan Zaitoun said the event cost an estimated $350,000.

The winner, Zhalia Sirwan, is a 20-year old college student from Sulaimani. 

Comments

 
Outsider | 7/10/2016
This is a very positive event for the whole Kurdish population, no matter what country they live in! Kurdistan, most of the world is proud of your march toward a modern democratic society.
Mohamedzzz | 8/10/2016
Bravo
5870 Views

Be Part of Your Rudaw!

Share your stories, photos and videos with Rudaw, and quite possibly the world.

What You Say

A Kurd | 11/20/2018 3:17:30 AM
This is a complete lie and fabrication. It is a made up propaganda by the mullahs. There is NO, absolutely no sanctions on any type of drug or food;...
Tigran Hakopian | 11/20/2018 8:04:02 PM
See the comments of these so called opressed people: Hate and anger towards Iranian children, Iranian mothers and citizens of Iran. Poor Assyrians...
Cancer medication scarce due to US sanctions on Iran
| 19/11/2018 | (4)
SAVE THE KURDS | 11/20/2018 7:51:07 PM
President Trump has always recognized the bravery of the Kurds and he consistently describes them as his allies and has most recently said that he...
PKK's Murat Karayilan brushes off $5mn US bounty on his head
| yesterday at 09:44 | (1)
FAUthman | 11/19/2018 5:03:25 AM
This is a very useful report by Rudaw with a lot of very important quotes here. T.U.
FAUthman | 11/20/2018 5:00:51 PM
A key quote from the US side: “That’s what we’re here to do and once we feel that’s complete ( ISIS defeat ) and our partners (SDF) are taken care...
US forces visit Syrian border villages after Turkish shelling
| 18/11/2018 | (2)
pre-Boomer Marine brat | 11/20/2018 3:58:49 PM
This will be utterly ineffective -- It would have spine if the EoCHR said, unless Demirtas is released within 24, the EU will immediately place a...
European court rules for Demirtas’ pre-trial release
| 20/11/2018 | (1)

Elsewhere on Rudaw

After reported corruption, Iraq electricity minister meets with GE and Siemens 5 hours ago |

After reported corruption, Iraq electricity minister meets with GE and Siemens

"The ministry calls on the newspaper to present more
Prominent Iranian human rights lawyer released 6 hours ago |

Prominent Iranian human rights lawyer released

He was granted conditional release after serving more
Turkish army cracks down on dissident militants in al-Bab 20 hours ago |

Turkish army cracks down on dissident militants in al-Bab

Turkey conducted similar op in Afrin, imposed more
0.343 seconds