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Fighting Hislam

Fighting Hislam

Susan Carland

Melbourne University Press

Publication Date – 1st May 2017

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I was given this book by the publisher in exchange for an honest review,  This book was written to quash to (un)truisms about Muslim women:  the first, that women are always oppressed by their religion; and, secondly, that women’s liberation can only come through the rejection of Islam.  The writer, a western convert to the faith, speaks of people’s reactions to her research, outlining how they would inevitably think that, when she told them that she would be researching women and Islam, she would be talking of victimisation and oppression.  They would assume that any activism would take the shape of a rejection of Islam. In the face of this, the author has interviewed Muslim women from; Australia, North America, and Egypt who fight oppression from the inside of their faith, using Islam and Islamic scriptures as a tool in their struggle.  

Her interviewees speak of; their relationship to their religion, use of Islamic scripture  within their fight for equality, the attitudes of other Muslims,   their treatment  at the hands  of  Islamic leaders, their feeling towards the west, their attitudes concerning feminism, and how modern day western thought and apprehensions about Islam  affect their lives. These interviews give a challenging, but inspirational, view of the lives of those women fighting to gain a footing in their faith, showing that women can, and have, played a role in Islam, challenging, both; the western ideas concerning their faith and the believes, of some of the adherents of Islam, concerning the role of women.  This is an academic work but is accessible to an interested non-academic reader.  The writing is clear and there is an absence of academic lingo.  If you have an interest in; Islam, faith, gender, activism, scripture, colonialism and/or feminism, you should read this text.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Posted in arc, Uncategorized

Double reviev

Beyond Trans

Heath Fogg Davis

NYU Press

Publication Date 06th June 2017

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This book was given me by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.    This book challenges our understanding of gender and sexual identity.  The author asks the question ‘why are so many spheres of life dependent on a rigid sexualised/gendered segregation.  Utilising the case studies of; Transport passes requiring gender identifiers, public toilets, sex segregated colleges and sports, they question the necessity of the sexual/gendered divisions utilised by the institutions that create and govern these artefacts/spaces.  This is an interesting and thought provoking work.

 

Post Truth; the new war on truth and how to fight back

Matthew D’ancona

Penguin Random House

Publication Date 18th May 2017

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This book looks at the rise of fake news in modern society and seeks to analyse the rise of this phenomena   The book explores the ways how the concept of truth and truth telling have been belittled in modern society.  The author bemoans the ways in which scientific knowledge and expertise have been discredited by powerful political and business interests. He uses; the Brexit campaign, the Trump campaign, Global warming sceptics, holocaust deniers and those spreading fear over vaccinations to build his case.  He argues that these campaigns have been based on a disregarding of truth, and scientific fact, and an exploitation of emotional rhetoric.  The author argues that these stories have gained wings with the advent of social media.    This is an interesting and topical work that needs to be read.