Twitter isn’t impressed with French actors’ ‘performative activism’ of cutting their hair in solidarity with Iranian women

Twitter isn’t impressed with French actors’ ‘performative activism’ of cutting their hair in solidarity with Iranian women

A video was heavily criticised on Twitter by netizens who disapproved of the move because of France's hijab ban and called it "white saviour outrage".
Updated 07 Oct, 2022

As the world learns more about the protests sweeping Iran with calls of justice for Mahsa Amini, a young woman who died in the custody of Iranian morality police, more and more people are expressing their support for the cause. However, a video of French actors cutting locks of their hair in the name of solidarity was not well received due to their country’s harsh stance on Muslim women wanting to wear the hijab or niqab.

The protests in Iran are against the government forcing women to cover their heads and inflicting violence on them in cases where the arbitrary dress codes are broken. As an act of resistance, many Iranian women are chopping off their hair.

On Wednesday, Godzilla actor Juliette Binoche, Isabelle Huppert and Marion Cotillard were among several French actors who shared a compilation video of them cutting locks of their hair in solidarity with women in Iran. Binoche dedicated the move to “freedom rights for Iranian women and men” in her post. The video opens with Binoche and the Persian rendition of Italian folk song ‘Bella Ciao’, an anthem for the anti-fascist resistance.

But the video, well intentioned as it may seem, received backlash from netizens who labelled it an act of “performative solidarity” and “white saviour outrage”.

A Palestinian activist took to Twitter and wrote, “French women doing this performative solidarity might as well go fight against their state’s racist oppression of Muslim women wanting to wear the hijab.” She called the women out for being shamelessly out of touch with reality.

The video didn’t put some people in the best of moods.

Another sarcastically thanked them for “cutting their split ends” for freedom, referring to how little hair they were cutting.

“How can you choose one and neglect other? Their [selective] feminism is problematic, Support both or none please,” argued a user.

However, we want to point out that Binoche, at least, has spoken up about the rights of Muslim women. In 2016, the actor urged Europe to accept refugees and to respect the right of Muslim women to wear the hijab.

This user called out the “white savior outrage”.

Another called their selective outrage the “whitest thing”.

This user, however, questioned why French women cutting a little bit of their hair is being equated with Iranian women “shaving their heads in protest of being killed.”

For this netizen, “nothing is more pretentious than French women cutting snippets of hair ‘in solidarity with Iranian women’ while they support their country’s ban on Muslim women practicing their religion” by wearing a hijab.

Amini, 22, was pronounced dead days after the notorious morality pol­i­ce detained the Iranian Kurd last month for allegedly breaching the Isla­mic republic’s strict dress code for women.

Anger flared at her funeral and spread to become the biggest wave of protests to rock Iran in almost three years, despite the reportedly violent backlash by security forces that have killed scores and seen hundreds arrested.


Soniye tu auder te la Oct 07, 2022 03:40pm
The French are stupid. They only have few things to offer such as, great wine, cheese, patisseries, cosmetics, designer clothing and fighter jets.
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ABE Oct 07, 2022 03:43pm
Hypocrisy of the French. Her government will not allow Muslim women who want to wear Hijab. Would she therefore, burn a Hermes Scarf instead in protest and solidarity with Muslim women in France??
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Jin Oct 07, 2022 05:35pm
The white saviour
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Tanvir Khan Oct 07, 2022 05:57pm
The secular state of Iran! Self-floggers shall be treated in psychiatric institutions, at state expense!
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Ahmed Oct 07, 2022 07:56pm
French who? Nobody takes them seriously. Neither should we.
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Hamed Oct 07, 2022 11:05pm
What did the french do during mass murder and concentration camps till 1962 in Algeria, etc.
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Alih Kazmi Oct 07, 2022 11:16pm
White women need to come out of their Me Tarzana syndrome.
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Kuro Oct 08, 2022 04:54am
Well not like in France anyone was killed for trying to wear Hijab...there is no real comparison
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Realdeal Oct 08, 2022 07:07am
This is called "The French way" - selective feminism and human rights. Shallow and bad taste to the core when you are denying your muslim community the most basic rights culminating in a national stigma of muslims. Charity begins from home!
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El Cid Oct 08, 2022 07:34am
Hypocrites a go go!
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ABE Oct 08, 2022 12:29pm
Perhaps this will start a new global trend, when Women start cutting their own hair, instead of regular visits to some over-priced pretentious sissy Hair Stylist, who chats more and snips a few hair to make these ladies feel special!
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