Masih Alinejad’s Stealthy Freedom Facebook protest page has garnered over 720,000 likes in just a few months. Founded as a page for Iranian women to upload photos of themselves sans head covering, it has now evolved into a wide-reaching platform to which Iranian women can upload their writing, songs, photos and videos and express themselves to a global audience of hundreds of thousands.
These women’s cries of protest have not fallen on deaf ears, with many around the world campaigning in support of their struggle. Most recently, it was a video of an Iranian woman busting a move on a Tehran subway train to a song by British pop group Little Mix that went viral all over the world, receiving a mention on NPR, The Telegraph, the BBC and The Independent, among other outlets.
The Independent noted that the woman, whose hijab fell down to her shoulders during the energetic dance, had actually broken two Iranian laws during her protest: one that prohibits dancing in public, and one that mandates headscarves for women.
This is not the first time dancing has been used as a form of protest in Iran – last spring, six young Iranians who appeared in a tribute video to Pharrell’s ‘Happy’ in western attire were sentenced to 91 lashes for the crime of “violating public chastity.”
Can Iran’s newest heroine expect the same punishment? As Alinejad told The Independent, “the girl was trying to keep her scarf on” and made sure her face wasn’t shown – because in Iran, every woman knows her limits, especially the limits of her protest.