Muslimah

 

Nur Wulandari | Indonesia | 2018| 6 mins

"There are so many ways to be Muslimah—what have you chosen for yourself?"

Synopsis

This film is about a young woman—26-year-old Wulan, the film’s director—who grew up with two mothers, both of whom offered different perspectives on faith. Each of the women follow Islam but they all have their own interpretations about many aspects of the religion, like whether or not to wear Hijab. 

The Story

This film is a about a young woman—26-year-old Wulan, the film’s director. Wulan grew up with two mothers, both of whom were Muslim but had different perspectives about their faith. The differences between Wulan’s mothers represent how diverse Muslim women in Indonesia, and the world, are. Throughout her life, Wulan has come to understand that there are multiple interpretations of Islam and women in Islam; every Muslim woman should be able to make her own choices when it comes to interpreting Islam. The film posits a question for its director and audience: "There are so many ways to be Muslimah—what have you chosen for yourself?"

 

About Nur Wulandari 

Nur ‘Wucha’ Wulandari is a filmmaker from Indonesia. In 2009, she began volunteering with Kampung Halaman Foundation, a non-profit organisation based in Yogyakarta, Indonesia. While studying at the Department of Television, Recording Media Arts Faculty, Indonesian Institute of The Arts Yogyakarta from 2010–2015 Nur worked with Kampung Halaman as a Youth Facilitator. Before participating in the ‘See Me, Hear Me’ project, which was funded by DFAT’s Australian Awards Fellowship, Nur had produced several short films. She has experience developing both fiction and documentary films as a script writer, film director, assistant film director, line producer, facilitator, and mentor. 

Director’s Statement

When I received an Australian Awards Fellowship for a project that was about Women Muslim in Media, I thought “Muslim? Yes, I'm Muslim but I don't wear Hijab like many Muslim women do, at least in Indonesia”. For the first time, I felt very weird about this theme, like perhaps I don't really know about my religion, but I decided I would go and talk about Islam.

 

After two weeks in Australia, I learned various perspectives about Islam. I’m from Indonesia and I got to meet and work with Afia Pina, who is from Bangladesh; that’s two majority Muslim countries with the largest number of Muslim women in the world. I also met young Australian Muslim women, like Samiha, who told me about her perspective growing up in country where Muslims are a minority. So, while I was in Australia I was introduced to all these different ways to be Muslim.

Then I thought back to my own childhood and remembered what it was like growing up with two mothers and the different perspectives they offered about Islam. I remembered their different opinions would sometimes confuse me when I was a child and occasionally cause trouble.

 

Sometimes I felt that my First (biological) Mother was right and sometimes I thought my Second Mother (father’s sister) was right too. However, I understand now that the advice provided by both of my mothers is well-meaning. Based on my childhood and my experience in Australia, I know there are so many different perspectives. That’s why I wanted to make a documentary about Muslim women built around their statements about how Islam shapes their lives.