In the wake of September 11th, Muslim women in the West found themselves more marginalized than ever by a panicked discourse that did little to promote a true understanding of Islam or the Islamic world. Here, in this ambitious volume that includes essays, poetry, fiction, memoir, plays, and artwork, Muslim women speak for themselves, revealing a complexity of experience and thought that escapes most Western portrayals. Islam is, as editor Fawzia Afzal-Khan puts it, only "one spoke in the wheel of our lives." In Shattering the Stereotypes, essays by such writers as Ayesha Jalal, the Pakistani-American historian and MacArthur fellow, poems by award-winning poets including Suheir Hammad and Nathalie Handal, journalism from writers such as Barbara Nimri Aziz, and a selection of short fiction and plays that are not just ethnically but attitudinally diverse, together make a more rounded portrait of what it is to be a Muslim woman in the 21st century.
"Shattering the Stereotypes breaks open the poetic, complex, visionary, luscious, surprising, fierce, and uncompromising world of the women of Islam. An illuminating and educating must-read."-- Eve Ensler, author of the Vagina Monologues