Thinking Beyond Nation: Planetary Belonging as an Alternative in Kamila Shamsie’s Home Fire



This essay examines how Kamila Shamsie’s novel, Home Fire, reflects the profound changes in the world after the events of September 11, which redefined fundamental concepts like citizenship and forever changed the lives of the Muslim immigrants in the UK. The paper aims to challenge contemporary understandings of citizenship and nationality by adopting a planetary or strategic universalist perspective. In doing so, it intends to elucidate the complex relationships between the self and Others, particularly within the framework of state-defined rituals surrounding death. By exploring the contested notion of “Britishness” in the aftermath of 9/11, this essay distinguishes between citizenship, as artificially constructed by political sovereignty, and the concept of “planetarity," which transcends the immediate state-centric identity constructs.

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