Scheherazad's daughters

Views from a muslim diasporic woman writer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

In this paper, we discuss the works of Mohja Kahf, specifically her anthology of poetry Emails from Scheherazad and her novel, The Girl in the Tangerine Scarf, to show the challenges facing a Muslim practising Islam within the context of post 9/11. Mohja Kahf, of Syrian origin and now a creative writer and educator of literature residing in America, describes the experiences of the diasporic Muslim community as it adapts to its new home and foreign American customs, behaviour, and people. We will show the ways in which she comprehends her situation of being a hyphenated identity and what stereotypes of Muslims she debunks, rejects, or affirms. How she resolves the conflict of being a minority in a community where Islam is perceived with suspicion and sometimes derision will also be explored in our analysis of her works. There will undoubtedly be clashes, misunderstandings, and conflicts of opinions, but the learning curve of the diasporic resident will gradually become less precipitous, the slopes more gentle as she begins to negotiate the terrain. Kahf's works show a resolution of East-West conflicts as she comes to terms with the realities of being a hyphenated identity in America, and how she negotiates old ways with practices of the new host land.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)97-115
Number of pages19
JournalAsian Journal of Women's Studies
Volume19
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2013

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Muslim
writer
Islam
East-West conflict
community
poetry
stereotype
minority
educator
resident
learning
experience
literature

Keywords

  • Diaspora
  • Hyphenated identities
  • Islam
  • Migration
  • Muslim women writers
  • Scheherazad

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Gender Studies

Cite this

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