This book explores representations of queer migrant Muslims in international literature and film from the 1980s to the present. It brings together a variety of contemporary writers and filmmakers of Muslim heritage engaged in vindicating same-sex desire from several Western locations. The book approaches queer Muslims as figures forced to negotiate their identities according to the expectations of the West and of their migrant Muslim communities. It coins the concept of queer micropolitical disorientation via the work of Gilles Deleuze and Félix Guattari, Sara Ahmed and Gayatri Gopinath. The author argues that depictions of queer Muslims in the West disorganise the social categories that make up contemporary Western societies. The study covers three main themes: queer desire across racial and national borders; Islamic femininities and masculinities; and the queer Muslim self in time and place. These thematic clusters examine the nuances of artistic depictions of queer Muslims’ mundane challenges to Western Islamophobia and Islamicate heteronormativity. Written in a scholarly but accessible style, this is a timely contribution to the controversial topic of Islam and homosexuality, forging understanding about the dissident position of Muslims who contravene heteronormative values and their equivocal political position in the West.

Preventing ‘radicalisation’, ‘violent extremism’ and ‘terrorism’

5 Constructing the ‘Muslim’ other: preventing ‘radicalisation’, ‘violent extremism’ and ‘terrorism’ Introduction This chapter explores the strand of the ‘fight against terrorism’ discourse that connects the threat of terrorism to ‘violent religious extremism’. The chapter focuses specifically on an EU belief that preventing terrorism is best achieved through the development of policies designed to combat the process of ‘radicalisation’. The chapter considers the emergence and evolution of the EU’s counter-radicalisation discourse. It shows how the ‘radicalisation

in The European Union’s fight against terrorism

I begin with the assumption that there exists in both Western Europe and the USA a set of luridly coloured, highly distorted, yet widely held impressions of the Middle East, and of Muslims in general. These stereotypes have almost universal validity in the sense that they are as much accepted by those with personal experience of the area – businessmen, educators

in Asia in Western fiction

Against the backdrop of the hyper-politicisation of migration in Europe and increased levels of Islamophobia in Western society more generally, Muslims are frequently accused of rejecting inclusion in mainstream society choosing instead to socialise within co-religious communities characterised by distinct cultural and religious practices. 1 These perceptions of Muslims as ‘outsiders’ living within European society are extremely problematic for Muslim youth negotiating inclusion and ‘insider status’ in contemporary Ireland. Young

in Immigrants as outsiders in the two Irelands
Unveiling American Muslim women in Rolla Selbak’s Three Veils (2011)

A S WE have seen in the previous two chapters of this section on ‘Negotiating Islamic gender’, cinematic and literary narratives crafted by queer diasporic Muslim women micropolitically challenge commonplace images of Islamic gender, particularly mainstream Western expectations of Muslim masculinity and femininity, as well as dominant Muslim diasporic gender normativity. Moreover, they adhere to – in the case of Sarif’s I Can’t Think Straight – or subvert – in El Hosaini’s My Brother the Devil – Western ‘coming out’ narrative arcs

in Queer Muslim diasporas in contemporary literature and film
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Thinking across

A RETROSPECTIVE glance at all the writers and filmmakers whose work I have examined in this book should illustrate, at a most primal level, the sheer variety of Muslim identities and the multiplicity of directions that queer diasporas take across national borders: we have two secular British Muslims of South Asian heritage, one of them via South Africa; a Canadian Ismaili Muslim of East African and South Asian heritage living in Britain; a Turkish man of Islamicate heritage living in Italy; a British Muslim of mixed Egyptian and Welsh

in Queer Muslim diasporas in contemporary literature and film
Exploring gender, anti-racism, and homonormativity in Shamim Sarif ’s The World Unseen (2001) and I Can’t Think Straight (2008)

Q UEER DIASPORIC writers and filmmakers of Muslim heritage, as well as the scholars examining their work, regularly have to contend with sturdy Western ideologies when approaching the topic of gender in Islam. Like homosexuality , perceptions of how ‘Islam’ reputedly ‘does’ gender has become a touchstone of contemporary identity politics and it has been mobilised as the ideological undergirding of Euro-American geopolitical imperialism. As Jasmin Zine lucidly points out: In the

in Queer Muslim diasporas in contemporary literature and film
Queering ethnicity and British Muslim masculinities in Sally El Hosaini’s My Brother the Devil (2012)

S O FAR , our exploration of Shamim Sarif’s literary and film work has provided us with one viewpoint on the negotiation of sexual non-normativity within diasporic Muslim communities in Britain in in the first decade of the twenty-first century. Sarif’s films and novels, The World Unseen and I Can’t Think Straight , focus specifically on the plight of sexually dissident Muslim and Arab women. I have argued that, as the work of a British citizen of South African and South Asian Muslim heritage with no direct access to an Islamicate

in Queer Muslim diasporas in contemporary literature and film
Interstitial queerness and the Ismaili diaspora in Ian Iqbal Rashid’s poetry and films

T HE WORK of Canadian poet, screenwriter, and film director Ian Iqbal Rashid follows in the footsteps of Hanif Kureishi’s My Beautiful Laundrette and The Buddha of Suburbia , explored in the previous chapter. Here, I undertake a combined exploration of Rashid’s poetry and film work, since both media articulate overlapping themes of diaspora, ethnicity, faith, and sexuality in fictionalised but also autobiographical ways, with a keen emphasis on the realignment of allegiance and desire involved in queer Muslim diasporas. Rashid

in Queer Muslim diasporas in contemporary literature and film
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Queering Islam and micropolitical disorientation

versus traditional repression, but of containment versus elaboration, of a single pattern of homosexuality defined and delimited by institutions and discourses closely linked to the modern nation-state versus the variety, distribution, and longevity of same-sex patterns in Islamic societies. (Murray and Roscoe, 1997 , p. 6) HOMOSEXUALITY is, arguably, one of the thorniest contemporary topics surrounding Islam and its relationship with civil rights. To this day, same-sex acts are still a significant taboo even among Muslim communities in the

in Queer Muslim diasporas in contemporary literature and film