Garb and Gender

Written by Andi Yumansky, Multi-Faith Intern

On Tuesday, October 24, 2017, 35 people of diverse faith backgrounds came together to share, listen, and discuss the intersections of religious garb and gender. The event was co-sponsored by Hillel UofT and the Multifaith Centre and featured a panel-style presentation from people of Jewish, Muslim, Christian, and Sikh backgrounds – ranging in gender and age. Presenters shared about their personal experiences wearing religious garb, and the ways in which gender, culture, race and ethnicity are implicated by religious expression. Kufi’s and Kippa’s was facilitated by Hillel’s Multifaith intern, Andi yumansky, a Jewish student pursuing Pastoral Studies at Emmanuel College.

During the second half of the event, participants were invited to gather into small groups for intimate discussion. Groups were led by each of the speakers and included a diversity of Jewish, Christian, Muslim, Sikh and Hindu students. Small groups discussed topics such as religious garb and choice, identity, privilege and oppression, discrimination and theology. Lively discussions enabled students to reflect on their own experiences, as well as in contrast (and connection) to the experiences of others.

Participants then had an opportunity to eat food together, encouraging informal connecting and conversation.