Dear Uncle Molla! I am writing to ask you to have a look at this paper.

Before you wrote about bathroom, opium, mullah, falagga[1], magic, harmel[2], snake, frog, and such things in your magazine, but now it seems you have no other subject to write about and that is why you have focused only on women. For example, in the 23rd issue of the magazine, you wrote about women’s itching. Is it shame to itch? People usually itch when they feel an uncomfortable sensation on the skin. If itching is a shame, why do men itch? Itching is an old habit of mullahs. Have you forgotten a world-viewed Muslim man who scratched his neck, his ears and cleaned his nails at Baku station?

You wrote in the 24th issue of the magazine that women have no clue about money calculation. You have no right to write about it. Have you ever taught any science to women at school? How can they know about money calculation? And I myself have seen and also heard that many men calculate money with their fingers. They call “twenty manats” like “two tens”, “a hundred manats” like “two fifties.”

You write in the 25th issue of the magazine that you are mocking women’s chewing gum. Supposedly you remember women’s chewing gum when you heard about them. Is it a shame to chew gum? Why was gum made? If there was no gum, how peddlers would earn money?

Why isn’t it shame for Russian women to nibble sunflower seeds, but for us it is shame to chew gum? Moreover, I have seen that when men see their women chewing, they ask their women to give the gum to them.

You mock at women’s shoes in the 26th issue of the magazine. You are a mullah, and you wear shoes made by Russians and Armenians and go to sacred places. Is it right? Will you pray come true? And in some issues of the magazine, you depict Muslim women’s dresses and begin to mock them. For example, in the 17th issue of the magazine we see that horses are afraid of seeing Muslim women. You should know that those horses are the Russian ones and they have never seen Muslim women. But horses will be afraid when they see Russian women’s dress, when they see that Russian women ride a horse barefaced and walking with men in Muslim cities, such as Tabriz and Mazandaran. It will make not only horses but also people be afraid. In short, please don’t paint Muslim women in your magazine, because people who learn Russian are terrified when they see these pictures and they begin to be interested in Russian women. And as a result, they marry Russian women and I know that it is not in the mullah’s favor. Because this marriage brings money to priests, not mullah.

Aunt Spinner

Molla Nasreddin, October 13, 1906, N 28

[1] A tool that was used to punish a student in mullah schools

[2] This wild plant is used in Eastern countries for preventing people from bad things, disaster