Islamists and Nudity


mermaid Statue

( Mermaid Statue in Alexandria – before vandalism)

When Salafi Nour Party M.P. Gamal Hamed called for the abolition of ballet performances in Egypt, describing it as “immoral” and a form of “nude art,” many were shocked and questioned his logic and sense of priority. Surely Egypt has more pressing problems than the debate of the appropriateness of ballet. However, Hamid is not alone; President Morsi has previously expressed how he was troubled by “naked restaurants,” like Hooters in the U.S.  Furthermore, for Islamists, nudity is not just limited to people, but also extends to objects; the Mermaid statue in Alexandria, constructed by my uncle Fathi Mahmoud, depicting a Greek God in the form of a bull hugging a beautiful mermaid as symbol of Mediterranean Alexandria, and its Greek heritage, is one example of an artwork considered by Islamists as absurd nudity, prompting some Egyptian Salafis to temporarily cover it…

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