Transnational Politics and Feminist Inquiries in the Middle East: An Interview with Professor Lila Abu-Lughod

Basuli Deb, Lila Abu-Lughod


In this interview Professor Abu-Lughod traces how her detour into postcolonial studies and transnational feminism created new possibilities for inquiries into the Middle East, while emphasizing how significant ethnographic research was for her to address key issues in postcolonial studies. The interview then focuses on the question of Palestine, and Abu-Lughod talks about her US academic father, Ibrahim Abu-Lughod, who came from Palestine and returned to Palestine in his later life, as well as her personal and professional commitments to justice in the region. She reflects on the distinctive ways in which women experience militarized zones of conflict, such as Palestine, as well as on the intersectional politics between the Palestinian cause and gender justice for sexual minorities. Elaborating on how Palestinian art has played a key activist role in resisting Israeli oppression against the Palestinians, the interview ends with Abu-Lughod discussing how her forthcoming book "Saving Muslim Women" speaks to transnational feminist inquiries in the Middle East.

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