An Egyptian woman's reflections on her changing homeland—updated with an afterword on the Arab Spring In language that vividly evokes the lush summers of Cairo and the stark beauty of the Arabian desert, Leila Ahmed movingly recounts her Egyptian childhood growing up in a rich tradition of Islamic women and describes how she eventually came to terms with her identity as a feminist living in America. As a young woman in Cairo in the forties and fifties, Ahmed witnessed some of the major transformations of this century—the end of British colonialism, the rise of Arab nationalism, and the breakdown of Egypt's once multireligious society. As today's Egypt continues to undergo revolutionary change, Ahmed's inspirational story remains as poignant and relevant as ever.
The author of Women and Gender in Islam offers a thought-provoking memoir of her own odyssey from an Egyptian Muslim childhood, to her struggle to define herself as a woman, a Muslim, an Egyptian, Arab, and feminist. Reprint.
Examining late twentieth-century autobiographical writing by Arab women novelists, poets, and artists, this anthology explores the ways in which Arab women have portrayed and created their identities within differing social environments. Even as the collection dismantles standard notions of Arab female subservience, the works presented here go well beyond the confines of those traditional boundaries. The book explores the many routes Arab women writers have taken to speak to each other, to their readers, and to the world at large. Drawing from a rich body of literature, the essays collectively attest to the surprisingly lively and committed roles Arab women play in varied geographic regions, at home and abroad. These recent writings assess how the interplay between individual, private, ethnic identity and the collective, public, global world of politics has impacted Arab women's rights.
Border crossing is a significant experience in the global era when many people cross borders, whether in cultural, geopolitical, relational, or existential terms. Border crossing can provide a great opportunity for spiritual growth, yet it is often a violent and dangerous process. Thus there is a need to explore border-crossing spirituality: to examine how various aspects of border crossing impact human life, analyze why border crossing happens, and explain how the act of border crossing provides transformation. Border crossing is an action undertaken to expand one's own boundaries, and from it emerges the borderland--a third space where one's transformation can occur. This book primarily focuses on various teachings of border crossing and the notion of "being in between." Almost every religious tradition has within it a spiritual teaching of border crossing and the importance of the borderland. This book is, by nature, cross cultural, interreligious, and interspiritual. Through the action of border crossing, transformation occurs in the borderland, and border-crossing spirituality can be crystallized as living a radical hospitality, valuing friendship, remaining in the present, and reclaiming subjectivity.
Discussion of Mexican migration to the United States is often infused with ideological rhetoric, untested theories, and few facts. In Crossing the Border, editors Jorge Durand and Douglas Massey bring the clarity of scientific analysis to this hotly contested but under-researched topic. Leading immigration scholars use data from the Mexican Migration Project—the largest, most comprehensive, and reliable source of data on Mexican immigrants currently available—to answer such important questions as: Who are the people that migrate to the United States from Mexico? Why do they come? How effective is U.S. migration policy in meeting its objectives? Crossing the Border dispels two primary myths about Mexican migration: First, that those who come to the United States are predominantly impoverished and intend to settle here permanently, and second, that the only way to keep them out is with stricter border enforcement. Nadia Flores, Rubén Hernández-León, and Douglas Massey show that Mexican migrants are generally not destitute but in fact cross the border because the higher comparative wages in the United States help them to finance homes back in Mexico, where limited credit opportunities makes it difficult for them to purchase housing. William Kandel's chapter on immigrant agricultural workers debunks the myth that these laborers are part of a shadowy, underground population that sponges off of social services. In contrast, he finds that most Mexican agricultural workers in the United States are paid by check and not under the table. These workers pay their fair share in U.S. taxes and—despite high rates of eligibility—they rarely utilize welfare programs. Research from the project also indicates that heightened border surveillance is an ineffective strategy to reduce the immigrant population. Pia Orrenius demonstrates that strict barriers at popular border crossings have not kept migrants from entering the United States, but rather have prompted them to seek out other crossing points. Belinda Reyes uses statistical models and qualitative interviews to show that the militarization of the Mexican border has actually kept immigrants who want to return to Mexico from doing so by making them fear that if they leave they will not be able to get back into the United States. By replacing anecdotal and speculative evidence with concrete data, Crossing the Border paints a picture of Mexican immigration to the United States that defies the common knowledge. It portrays a group of committed workers, doing what they can to realize the dream of home ownership in the absence of financing opportunities, and a broken immigration system that tries to keep migrants out of this country, but instead has kept them from leaving.
Dynamic Islam analyzes the lives and works of four of the most influential liberal diaspora Muslim intellectuals of the late twentieth and early twenty-first centuries-Fatima Mernissi, Leila Ahmed, Fazlur Rahman, and Mohammed Arkoun. These prolific scholars are among the first generation of Muslims writing in Western languages who have intentionally directed their works toward audiences in the West, as well as the Muslim world. Jon Armajani examines the way these cutting-edge scholars have interpreted the Quran, Hadith, and Islamic history as they have constructed their visions for Islam in the modern world. Armajani vividly describes their perspectives on women and gender, veiling, Islamic revivalism, Islam and democracy, and Islamic mysticism. The volume also situates their ideas with respect to conservatively minded western Muslims and Islamic revivalists.
Arab Voices in Diaspora offers a wide-ranging overview and an insightful study of the field of anglophone Arab literature produced across the world. The first of its kind, it chronicles the development of this literature from its inception at the turn of the past century until the post 9/11 era. The book sheds light not only on the historical but also on the cultural and aesthetic value of this literary production, which has so far received little scholarly attention. It also seeks to place anglophone Arab literary works within the larger nomenclature of postcolonial, emerging, and ethnic literature, as it finds that the authors are haunted by the same 'hybrid', 'exilic', and 'diasporic' questions that have dogged their fellow postcolonialists. Issues of belonging, loyalty, and affinity are recognized and dealt with in the various essays, as are the various concerns involved in cultural and relational identification. The contributors to this volume come from different national backgrounds and share in examining the nuances of this emerging literature. Authors discussed include Elmaz Abinader, Diana Abu-Jaber, Leila Aboulela, Leila Ahmed, Rabih Alameddine, Edward Atiyah, Shaw Dallal, Ibrahim Fawal, Fadia Faqir, Khalil Gibran, Suheir Hammad, Loubna Haikal, Nada Awar Jarrar, Jad El Hage, Lawrence Joseph, Mohja Kahf, Jamal Mahjoub, Hisham Matar, Dunya Mikhail, Samia Serageldine, Naomi Shihab Nye, Ameen Rihani, Mona Simpson, Ahdaf Soueif, and Cecile Yazbak.Contributors: Victoria M. Abboud, Diya M. Abdo, Samaa Abdurraqib, Marta Cariello, Carol Fadda–Conrey, Cristina Garrigós, Lamia Hammad, Yasmeen Hanoosh, Waïl S. Hassan, Richard E. Hishmeh, Syrine Hout, Layla Al Maleh, Brinda J. Mehta, Dawn Mirapuri, Geoffrey P. Nash, Boulus Sarru, Fadia Fayez Suyoufie
The late President of Egypt, Gamal Abdel Nasser (1918-1970), has been represented in many major works of Egyptian literature and film, and continues to have a presence in everyday life and discourse in the country. Omar Khalifah's analysis of these representations focuses on how the historical character of Nasser has emerged in the Egyptian imaginary. He explores the recurrent images of Nasser in literature and film and shows how Nasser constitutes a perfect site for plural interpretations. He argues that Nasser has become a rhetorical device, a figure of speech, a trope that connotes specific images constantly invoked whenever he is mentioned. His study makes a case for literature and art to be seen as alternative archives that question, erase, distort and add to the official history of Nasser.
The essays in this volume are drawn from the tenth anniversary conference of the Center for the Study of Citizenship at Wayne State University, whose theme, “The Meaning of Citizenship,” provided an opportunity to reflect on a decade of study in the field. In an academic area where definitions are dynamic and multidisciplinary, editors Richard Marback and Marc W. Kruman have assembled fifteen contributors to show some of the rich nuances of membership in a political community. The Meaning of Citizenship addresses four dimensions of citizenship: the differentiation of citizenship in theory and practice, the proper horizon of citizenship, the character of civic bonds, and the resolution of conflicting civic and personal obligations. Contributors answer these questions from varying disciplinary perspectives, including ethnography, history, and literary analysis. Essays also consider the relevance of these questions in a number of specific regions, from Africa to the Caribbean, Middle East, Europe, and the United States. By identifying the meaning of citizenship in terms of geographic specificity and historical trajectory, the essays in this volume argue as a whole for a cross-disciplinary approach to the issues of inclusion and exclusion that are generated through any assertion of what citizenship means. The four primary concerns taken up by the contributors to this volume are as timely as they are timeless. Scholars of history, political science, sociology, and citizenship studies will appreciate this conversation about the full meaning of citizenship.