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The Ogden standard-examiner. (Ogden, Utah) 1920-current, October 01, 1922, The Standard - Examiner Sunday Feature Section, Image 18

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Persistent link: http://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn85058393/1922-10-01/ed-1/seq-18/

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onKirkAV MORNING OCTOBER 1, 1922 1
I 1 Ji The War Brought About the Emancipation of the Turkish I
I ' -MSk Women and the Abolition of the Harem, but Now After a 1
I iff Taste of Occidental Fashions the Sultan Has Decreed 1 hat j
I Ifi 1 '? e Fair Flapper . 1
I hair have been in vogue b H . j
Turkey since the war, but , I - 5 j W ,
the Sultan doesn't like them BSt K V HRPl
or his countrywomen's T j y.'M ? j Hfej
ish women must revert to I ' 1 fL' " ' fB
long pants and veiled faces rsK 11 lifli
faced with the alternative of going to A i Vt:. ?$' f "Si J ' 'ill'f 1
IrTHE flapper must go!" exclaimed
I the Sultan of all the Turks,
male and female. The flappers
of Constantinople and Pera and the
other place3 where Turks live and dio
gasped, for since the war their tribe had
grown and multiplied until the veil which
formerly hid the faces of Turkish femi
ninity had become de trop and obsolete.
And now a special ukase, or irade,
has been issued by the Sheik ul Islam,
head of the Moslem church, vetoing short
skirts and knock-knees and bobbed hair
and the other flapper attributes, for the
Sultan objected to the ladles of his
harem (pronounced "hah-reem") going
ahout like a lot of Broadway chorus
pirls, red of lips and vermilion of cheek,
not to mention the swagger, the slang
and the other things whlh accompany
the up-to-date flapper
It the irade was brought about by
the obtrusiveness of the Turkish flapper.
She percolated Into all walks of life,
from street sweeper to lady, from society
dame to cabaret performer. Wherever
you turned there was thi Occidental
tiuppcr! The Sultan, who is an old-fash-j
loned soul, with ideas datinp back to the
era c"f nuptial slavery, came, saw and
was d.'sgusbed.
Ho called his vizier and other officials
' Into conference and from them learned
that female independence had been de
clared and that male control of the well
known world was In serious danger from
the latest Western fad. So he decided
then and there to put a stop to the men
ace to the Turkish home life, to the
Turkish man and to the nation in gen
eral. But first it will be necessary to detail
the growth of female emancipation In
tho Turkish empire a movement duo
entirely to the war In fact, it was a
direct aftermath of the war
Until tho triumph of the Allies the
Turkish woman was a slave, to all in
, tents and purposes. She never saw her
future husband until the moment of her
marriage. Her father and occasionally
her mother picked out the man. Then
came .the wedding and the girl, who had
passed her youth in cloistered seclusion,
went Into a living tomb gorgeously ap
pointed, true, with slayes and servants
at her beck and call, but a tomb, never
theless! And then came the war Society the
i world over was disorganized. The
moral balance was upset Customs of
other days were discarded and forgot
ten. New ideas and new ideals usurped
the place of tjic old and tried ones.
1? was so in Turkey as in other coun
tries. The war had ruined many ; few
! had escaped Its consequences. Com
merce was at a standstill , business was
at its lowest ebb. Economic conditions
were such that the curtailment of per
sonal expenditure became a vital in c -sity.
Bit by bit, the Turk cut down tho
a expenses of his household Servants
were dismissed, slaves were told'
Thousands upon thot audi of women
B of the lower strata of society wCro forced
1 into the world of which they know noth-
, ing. They wero penniless and were
faced with the alternative of going to t 'Vi J ' JsE&fl
work or seeking a living in dubious ways. ti- ' ) ' 1 SKEBSKkkA
And to their credit, bi it said, they j S-H ij
the former. Soon the streets of Con- H j fi ''. a,. " .-j
6tantinople saw tho amazing sight of ''.vJa ' ft ' HV''
Turkish women in knickerbockers and .' ,' "
short skirts, without veils, sweeping tho , ' "v.T Vjt;5 r"". '"""H
The restaurants saw women waiter?; ' If : , ' jtrffl ' . ISr""' ' . .
stores were "manned" by women as sales- -'"".". " W' .f fe5 jKffifeaS N i jf L d-Sp?
men for the first time in Turkish history. y i , - A, '
And then came the most amazing v' I V.'- .-.jMs. 8 t.m am vm 1 w 3&
phase of all-the harems were practi- S - I I H ml SiV;
cally emptied of their inmates " S ' ' ' . jj q
They drifted into the cabarets in the Eu- ' fg
womanhood, with dc- flfe A f $jli&L.ft Gercme's painting "The Harem Bath," denictinr a scene in a Turkish
plorablo results. Fam- JSbSL '' harem. Many of the harems have been disbanded because of
ily life became a thing ft- ' ySaTbrrfa El & tremendous cost of upkeeo and their former inhabitants
of tho past. Homes x M&fkfirt WflrTmr" ;" have been driven Ij t'neir own resources
men. They trans- BHHHHHHHMHSHPiP'1'
greased the law
of tho Prophet
openly and brazenly.
. .. ... - . . . . MMMHMr.
Turkish wive of the old order enjoying one of the infrequent trips away from the harem. They are wearing the
costumes which have been generally discarded since the war riW
In Pera, the European cpjarter of Con
stantinople, Turkish women sank to the
lowest possible level. They seeped into
all walks of life. They out-Westerned
their Western sisters. They did not
know how to uso their new-found free
dom and became extremists. And the
male Turks took advantage of this state
of affairs. They commercialized the sit
uation to such an extent that a great
scandal ensued.
Of course, tho scandal reached the ears
of the government. But, as always, tho
Turkish government was slow to act.
Manana was the word to-morrow would
do as well as to-day.
But somehow or other the Sultan
heard and saw, for he indulged in added
liberty since the war. He went into the
highways and byways, even as Haroun-al-Raschid,
and saw with his own
eyes. Then he called his council to meet
and laid the matter before them Just
what transpired is not known, of course,
but one can almost imagine Abdul Hamid
saying: "B the beard of the Prophet!
I'll not permit the ways of the infidel
to dirty our land."
And the next day there was issued an
irade, which is Turkish for a pronuncia
mento, or police-order, that on and after
date, every Turkish woman must wear
long pants in place of the short skirt.
and that a veil of prescribe! thickness
and breadth must hide her more or less
beautiful face from the gaze of the un
believer !
Consternation seized tho Turkish flap
pers, young, old and in between. They
vowed by all that was sacred to flap
pers that never, no, never! would they
give up their new freedom.
The Sultan's irade was brief and to
the point. Every Turkish woman who
wanted to remain a Turkish woman was
ordered to wear the veil and to revert to
Turkish clothes. Social relations with
the infidel were curtailed. Women were
ordered off the streets. It was a sweep
ing police order. And then came the
strangest part of the entire well hu
man comedy.
Some of the older women, in whom
long usage had made obedience a second
nnture, obeyed implicitly and instantly.
But the younger generation rebelled and
declared that no mere Sultan would tell
THEM how to behave they were ladies
and knew how a lady should act! The
government was aghast. It did not
know how to deal with the recalcitrant,
because it had never had a rebellious
woman to handlo and knew nothing
about temperamental ladies. A deadlock
ensued, and at this writinp still exists.
Few Americans know Turkey. It is
still a land of mystery. One of these
few who is thoroughly acquainted with
existing conditions is Miss Atteyeh
Sumayeh, born in Syria, long a resident
of Turkey, and now a citizen of this
country. Miss Atteyeh sympathizes
with the efforts of her Turkish sisters
for emancipation.
"My Turkish sister Is no different In
her likes and desire3 and her mental
processes from her American prototype,"
said Miss Atteyeh. "She want freedom
of thought and action the latter within
the limits of propriety. I believe that the
days of harem seclusion, with all tho
virtual slavery that that implied, are
over. The Turkish woman is well read,
for she was rot permitted to do anything
MVS read. And through that reading
.-he imbibed Western ideas and ideals.
Whether they are better than Moslem
ones I will not say.
"I am in favor of
polygamy. This may
sound strange, but I
have seen it in its best
and worst forms, and I
can say honestly that
in either it is better
than the progressive
polygamy practiced
in America through
means of the divorce.
Jjpr 2 1
'urkish I
Typical flapper fashions which have met with
disfavor in Turkey, not so much because of
the design of the clothes, but from the moral
laxity which has resulted from the freedom
which Turkish women have demanded
since adopting them
courts. Let us take the old Turkish
household. The husband was equally
kind to all his wives. Being human, he
had a favorite, but he was kind to all.
If he divorced one he supplied her lib
erally with means of livelihood. Her
children wan taken care of. There was
no scandal, no publicity. He did not stay
out at night t- forpet his legal wives. In
the larger sense he was far more moral
than his American brother.
"As for the women, they were the most
moral in the world. When the war threw
open the doors of the harems the women
were like rudderless ships; they did not
know what to do nor where to turn.
"That freedom was not understood,
nor was it appreciated at first. Tha
women were thrown into the sea of life,
unable to swim or to stem the current of
6Vnta They dril ted-some survived,
many sank into the depths. They should
not be judged. I am an American and
I understand American ideals But I
also understand the Turkish mental
processes, though I am Christian. And I
honestly believe that the Sultan has done
the best thing possible under the circum
stance." In the meantime, the Sultan's janiza
ries are measuring the length of lne 1
women s skirts, investigating their mor
sta and seeking for traces of the his
toncal veil.

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