Thursday, March 6, 2014

Censorship in Saudi Arabia: Taylor Swift

Censorship in Saudi Arabia is often accomplished by someone taking a marking pen to women's skin if the person doing the censoring thinks too much of it is showing.  Taylor Swift's bright yellow strapless dress looks rather awkward with the skin of her arms, legs, and shoulders marked out in blue marker. Sometimes skin is marked out with scribbles, and times like these, great care is taken to color within the lines.

Below is what the CD sold in the rest of the world looks like...


7 comments:

Jerry Mc Kenna said...

One could make a pretty good art exhibit from the best of Saudi censorship. What is really weird is that your really have to look at this image to do it this well, so someone is having fun isn't he?

Susie of Arabia said...

Hi Jerry - I'm sure that in boys' schools here, coloring is a subject which is taken very seriously, cultivating future censors. Just kidding...

Andleeb Ikhlaq said...

At first i could not think about what they have actually censored , after reading post i got that ... for me blue with yellow looks nice and some one knows color combinations pretty well.
But he could have better near neck line.... But i am happy that at least they did not cover her with abaya :D

Anonymous said...

Hi Susie, logistical question - the CD is in shrink wrap with the Virgin price tag and looks neat and tidy like it came straight from the factory. So where does this censorship physically take place? At the customs/imports? At the store? And to be clear, every single CD is individually hand censored?

Susie of Arabia said...

Hi Anonymous - I have purchased other censored CDs and they have been in resealable clear cellophane envelopes. Not all CDs are censored. In fact not all copies of the same CD are censored. It is sporadic and inconsistent. I do not know where the censorship takes place. A salesman did tell us that the religious police sometimes make surprise visits to the store checking on things like this.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the response. Gosh, what a place. The hypocrisy and double standards and inconsistency and and and... I love Jerry's comment above the censor-er having to stare at the picture to do a good job - how true! Have they not thought of that, or perhaps they see it at a form of jihad, accepting the struggle of not getting turned on to save the destruction of other men who may wonder across it...

You know, really, if they were serious about this, I'd think they'd have a department of women "mutawa" to look after such items.

I have many Saudi friends here in North America, some from Jeddah. Their thinking is so much more, forward, than this. Funny how it's most often the Muslims living IN "Islamic" countries who make the rest of us look like fools.

Take care. :)

Myk said...

Utah has taken the Mutawwa's practices and is implementing them, much to the joy of religious fundamentalists all over the USA. http://abcnews.go.com/GMA/video/utah-school-alters-yearbook-photos-to-show-less-skin-23911862

So it's not just islamic fundamentalists who look like fools, Though they have a heck of a head start, certain americans are trying to catch up.