I am sitting on a train on my way home from a panel talk on Feminism & Islamophobia, on how the two collude to undermine Muslim women, and how Muslim women are erased and reduced to “the veil”. I am exhausted and bewildered. The panel consisted of five (four panellists and one chair) hijab-wearing women of colour. In a University setting this is a rarity. … Continue reading Reflections on a panel talk: the violence of white fragility and the erasure of its victims
This post is a response to a question I got asked during my Instagram takeover of amaliah.com’s story (@thebrownhijabi). I mentioned my fascination with “the way liberal feminism colludes with islamophobia” and was then asked to elaborate – which I did, but which I want to do more now. How do liberal feminism and Islamophobia work together? First off, we need to define what I … Continue reading When Feminism & Islamophobia are Two Sides of the Same Coin
EDIT: disclaimer that this is from my perspective in Britain and primarily about rhetoric here and in other Western European/North American contexts. The hijab, burqa, burkini, FGM, ‘honour killings’ and ‘forced marriages’ are familiar tropes when it comes to thinking about migration and Islam in ‘the West’. Their prevalence represents the slippage between ‘women’s rights’ and questions of national borders and religion, reflecting the way … Continue reading Why are we obsessed with Muslim women?
A friend of mine once told me that one of the things she most respected about her partner was her ability to say, ‘I don’t know’. ‘I don’t know’ was the humility to admit her lack of knowledge and to acknowledge that some things just had not been thought through yet. It deserved respect because it was rare, indeed, it is rare to hear those … Continue reading Not Everything has (or needs) a Feminist Explanation
This is going to be a post based on a talk I gave last week (I have always wanted to say that, please forgive the pretentiousness). It was loosely about ‘Liberating Academia’ and what that would entail. Two other amazing panellists talked about their experiences and ideas too and for my part, I talked about my experience studying history and my conception of what liberation … Continue reading Liberating Academia: Believe Nothing, Question Everything
CN: racism, sexism, marginalisation, silencing. It’s 2016 and I am That Person. Not always, but a lot of times. The One Who Talks About Race, The Angry One, The Intersectional Feminist. Sometimes I like it, I like to make people feel uncomfortable, like to be a Nuisance just by being there. But recently its also begun to make me feel trapped. People expect opinions on things, … Continue reading ‘I thought YOU’D find that problematic?’
Content Note: silencing, debate. So, a couple of weeks ago I wrote a blog post about my feelings. It was a fairly self-indulgent post lacking in much analysis or critique. But sometimes – as perhaps is the nature of someone who keeps a blog – I find it therapeutic to write about and process my feelings in such a way. However, any therapeutic feeling I … Continue reading Be afraid, be very afraid
I laugh at a lot of things. I laugh at things that are funny, I laugh at things that often aren’t and I laugh when I don’t know what else to do. But some things – some things aren’t funny. Some things are not so easy to shrug off even when you laugh in the face of them. This week I was invited to attend a … Continue reading Is it really funny though?
Content Note: discussion of migration, racism, racialised masculinities, masculinity, gendering of migration, colonialism, imperialism, Euro-centrism, dehumanisation of black and brown bodies. “Migrant crisis”. These two words have become so overused as a label to term the plight of non-white human beings deemed “problems” to the European continent, that they have lost any poignancy they may once have held. I saw an article yesterday headlined something … Continue reading Why are we calling it a “Migrant Crisis”?
Cambridge’s Women’s Forum was hosted by FLY (the BME women’s group) last night. It was a fantastic event and a lively discussion where a lot of people probably were made to consider things they hadn’t before. One of the points I was keen to emphasise at the event was one which is especially relevant to Cambridge and other ‘intellectual’ spaces: that of invalidating people’s lived experiences. … Continue reading Academic invalidation of Lived Experience