Renegotiating romantic genres: Textual resistance and Muslim chick lit

Renegotiating romantic genres: Textual resistance and Muslim chick lit The proliferation of images of “oppressed” and “downtrodden” Muslim women circulating via media discourses and popular memoirs leading up to and after 9/11 has led a number of British Muslim women to “write back” to such representations. However, these writers face a challenging politics of reception, aided by marketing tactics that attempt to reinscribe their voices within limited binaries of East and West, traditional and modern, Islamic and secular. Implicit in such binaries is the assumption of an inherent incompatibility between Islam and the “Western values” deemed necessary for fully-fledged citizenship in modern Britain, especially when it comes to gender equality. Leila Aboulela and Shelina Zahra Janmohamed are two writers who have been successful in negotiating this difficult terrain. Through their manipulation of secular romantic forms, they present readers with more nuanced articulations of Muslim womanhood that fuse feminist and religious concerns. Aboulela’s novel The Translator (1999) and Janmohamed’s memoir Love in a Headscarf (2009) appropriate the domestic novel and chick lit genres, respectively, and recast them within an Islamic signification system. In the shifting space between convention and innovation, their works enact a resistant aesthetic that draws attention to the sexism found in both traditional cultural mores and consumer-driven neoliberal gender regimes, offering personal faith and spirituality as a model for more equitable gender relations. In making a clear distinction between culture and religious belief, their works advocate for a form of Islam that coexists with other values and identities, including British, and clear discursive space for a more complex understanding of the intersection between gender and faith. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png The Journal of Commonwealth Literature SAGE

Renegotiating romantic genres: Textual resistance and Muslim chick lit

Loading next page...
 
/lp/sage/renegotiating-romantic-genres-textual-resistance-and-muslim-chick-lit-vM0dt89VH8
Publisher
SAGE Publications
Copyright
© The Author(s) 2017
ISSN
0021-9894
eISSN
1741-6442
D.O.I.
10.1177/0021989416686156
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

The proliferation of images of “oppressed” and “downtrodden” Muslim women circulating via media discourses and popular memoirs leading up to and after 9/11 has led a number of British Muslim women to “write back” to such representations. However, these writers face a challenging politics of reception, aided by marketing tactics that attempt to reinscribe their voices within limited binaries of East and West, traditional and modern, Islamic and secular. Implicit in such binaries is the assumption of an inherent incompatibility between Islam and the “Western values” deemed necessary for fully-fledged citizenship in modern Britain, especially when it comes to gender equality. Leila Aboulela and Shelina Zahra Janmohamed are two writers who have been successful in negotiating this difficult terrain. Through their manipulation of secular romantic forms, they present readers with more nuanced articulations of Muslim womanhood that fuse feminist and religious concerns. Aboulela’s novel The Translator (1999) and Janmohamed’s memoir Love in a Headscarf (2009) appropriate the domestic novel and chick lit genres, respectively, and recast them within an Islamic signification system. In the shifting space between convention and innovation, their works enact a resistant aesthetic that draws attention to the sexism found in both traditional cultural mores and consumer-driven neoliberal gender regimes, offering personal faith and spirituality as a model for more equitable gender relations. In making a clear distinction between culture and religious belief, their works advocate for a form of Islam that coexists with other values and identities, including British, and clear discursive space for a more complex understanding of the intersection between gender and faith.

Journal

The Journal of Commonwealth LiteratureSAGE

Published: Jun 1, 2018

There are no references for this article.

You’re reading a free preview. Subscribe to read the entire article.


DeepDyve is your
personal research library

It’s your single place to instantly
discover and read the research
that matters to you.

Enjoy affordable access to
over 18 million articles from more than
15,000 peer-reviewed journals.

All for just $49/month

Explore the DeepDyve Library

Search

Query the DeepDyve database, plus search all of PubMed and Google Scholar seamlessly

Organize

Save any article or search result from DeepDyve, PubMed, and Google Scholar... all in one place.

Access

Get unlimited, online access to over 18 million full-text articles from more than 15,000 scientific journals.

Your journals are on DeepDyve

Read from thousands of the leading scholarly journals from SpringerNature, Elsevier, Wiley-Blackwell, Oxford University Press and more.

All the latest content is available, no embargo periods.

See the journals in your area

DeepDyve

Freelancer

DeepDyve

Pro

Price

FREE

$49/month
$360/year

Save searches from
Google Scholar,
PubMed

Create lists to
organize your research

Export lists, citations

Read DeepDyve articles

Abstract access only

Unlimited access to over
18 million full-text articles

Print

20 pages / month

PDF Discount

20% off