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The word is used in particular to refer to clothing which covers a woman's chest, head and hair. This is often done in Islam for females over the age of puberty. The headscarf, a symbol of hijab, is worn in the presence of adult males outside their immediate family. It is not necessary when females or males are within their immediate family.
The Arabic word used to specifically mean this is "khimār" (خمار). This "veil" can come in several different types, such as an ordinary veil (which only covers the head), a niqab, a burka which covers the entire body, and any form of covering used to veil. There are many styles to wear. Muslim men must also observe standards of modest dress.
- Murphy R.F. 1964. Social distance and the veil. American Anthropologist. New Series, 66, No. 6, Part 1, pp. 1257–1274.
- Brenner S. 1996. Reconstructing self and society: Javanese Muslim women and "the veil". American Ethnologist, 23, (4) , pp. 673–697.
- Tristam, Pierre. Does the Quran require women to wear the veil? About News.