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documentary on Indonesian warias
Documentary on Muslim transsexuals or warias

in INDONESIA, 01/01/2013

Indonesian transsexuals, or Warias, still feel the urge to practice Islam despite being shunned by Islamic Authorities.


Tucked away inside the back room of a beauty salon in Yogyakarta, Indonesia, is a school for Islamic studies tailored to a very specific student body: transsexuals. The Senin–Kamis school (“Monday–Thursday” in Indonesian, the two days of the week school is in session) was founded in 2008 as a safe place for transgender Muslims to practice their faith without judgment or ridicule. In Indonesia, transsexuals are known as waria, a portmanteau derived from the Indonesian words for woman (wanita) and man (pria). I first learned about the plight of the waria while researching an entirely different story, but on discovering Senin-Kamis I abandoned my original project and made arrangements to visit.

Watch the documentary here

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