Campus Watch in the Media
Six Impossible Things Before Breakfast? [on Lila Abu-Lughod]
by Mary Jackson
To a devout Muslim, that's a doddle. A devout Muslim can believe as many impossible things as Allah wills, for Allah S.W.T. knows best. Thus a remarkable number of devout Muslims believe both that the Holocaust didn't happen, and that it was merely a good start. An alarming number of Muslims believe that Mohammed was a perfect man and that he "married" a nine-year-old child. The contradiction is only apparent to the evil infidel.
Columbia University professor and Muslim Lila Abu-Lughod surpasses your average Muslim in her ability to believe what is logically impossible, for she believes that honour killings:
(a) Don't happen
(b) Happen, but aren't honour killings
(c) If they happen, and they are honour killings, which they don't and they aren't, but if they do and they are, they are .... wait for it ... the fault of the West, because the West intervenes too much, trying to impose its own honour-killing-free values on a society that honour kills.
Confused? That's because you're an evil colonialist infidel. Thanks to Phyllis Chesler for drawing my attention to this week's Dozy Bint:
On October 25, 2010, at the American University of Beirut, Abu-Lughod admonished feminists who ostensibly sensationalize honor killings, a position which, in her opinion, represents "simplistic, civilizational thinking." She "warned that an obsessive focus on the so-called honor crime may have negative repercussions" and that "people should be wary of classifying certain acts as a distinctive form of violence against women." (Her remarks are summarized in a press release published by the university. According to the university, the article on which the speech is based will be published early next year inDifferences: A Journal of Feminist Cultural Studies.)
Abu-Lughod opposed the "concept of clear-cut divisions between cultures, which she viewed as a form of imprisoning rural and immigrant communities," and suggested that focusing on "honor crimes" allowed "scholars and activists to ignore important contexts for violence against women: social tensions; political conflicts; forms of racial, class, and ethnic discrimination; religious movements; government policing and surveillance; and military intervention."
Abu-Lughod has form. She embraces the idea of the veil as "portable seclusion", which liberates women to move around freely. And we are not to question a culture and religion in which men may beat or rape women who dare to move around freely without this "portable seclusion":
[W]e need to ask some hard questions about what we actually mean when we use words like "agency" and "choice" when talking about human beings, always social beings always living in particular societies with culturally variable meanings of personhood.
"Agency", "choice" - all so hideously white.Note: Postings in "Campus Watch in the Media" do not necessarily reflect the views of Campus Watch.
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