women

My Review of the New Film Mustang Published by Bitch

To read the article on Bitch, click here.

NEW FILM “MUSTANG” EXPLORES YOUNG WOMEN’S VITALITY—AND PATRIARCHY’S BRUTALITY
by Stephanie AbrahamNews_en-Mustang-1

The beautiful and challenging new film Mustang looks at the lengths that people will go to crush female independence and sexuality, and the varied responses young women can have in the face of strangling sexism and male domination. It’s notable that the film, which takes place in Turkey with a Turkish cast, is France’s official entry to the Academy Awards—the director, Deniz Gamze Ergüven, is Turkish and French.

Mustang’s story is told through the eyes of Lale (Günes Sensoy), the youngest of five orphaned sisters who are being raised by their grandmother in a small Turkish town. Lale is only nine years old, but is wise enough to see injustice and sassy enough to renounce it. The film opens with her as narrator saying, “It’s like everything changed in the blink of an eye. One moment we were fine, then everything turned to shit.” (more…)

I’m Reading at Expressing Motherhood–Buy Your Tix Now! #exmoshow

Expressing Motherhood*** UPDATE as of September 26th: Unfortunately, I won’t be able to participate this time around given a scheduling conflict. Stay tuned as I hope to participate in the future!

I’ve been chosen to be part of the cast of Expressing Motherhood! I’m going to read a piece from my memoir-in-progress about choosing to be childfree. The show is one night only–on Saturday, November 7th at 7:30PM at Spirit Studio in Silverlake. Tickets are on sale now and since it’s in a small setting it’s going to sell out fast…buy your tickets now by clicking here! They’re $25 each, but the show should be well worth the splurge!

Passing as White, Flaming as Arab: My Essay in the #Arab American Journal #Mizna

mizna

"You're Arab American?"
"Yep." I nod, knowing what they'll say next.
"I never would've guessed. You don't even look Arab."
"That's what people tell me," I say with a smile, shrugging my shoulders. Over the years, I've played with different responses, having heard this reaction innumerable times from both Arabs and non-Arabs...

My essay, “Passing as White, Flaming as Arab–Why Mixed-Heritage Arab American Women Writers Choose Not to Pass as White and Instead to Flame as Arab,” has been published in the latest issue of Mizna! (Click on the title to read the essay in PDF. Visit mizna.org to buy your own copy of the amazing issue.)

Special thanks to Amira Jarmakani, Diana Abu-Jaber, Leila Buck, Lisa Suhair Majaj and Naomi Shihab Nye, who contributed their personal experiences and brilliant ideas.

My Article on #KatyPerrySuperBowl Got 14K Hits in 3 Days

Right after the Super Bowl, I published my take on the halftime show on my blog Feminist in the Suburbs. The next morning Bitch republished the article and got over 14K hits in 3 days! Check it out: Katy Perry’s Extremely Straight Performance of “I Kissed a Girl” at the Super Bowl.

Katy Perry 1

#RAWI Conference Kicks Off Friday Morning with My Presentation!

Passing Flaming Prezi

The Radius of Arab American Writers (RAWI) conference starts tomorrow in Minneapolis! I’m speaking on a panel Friday morning about Arab American identity. I had the honor of interviewing some heavy hitters: poet and author Naomi Shihab Nye, novelist and memoirist Diana Abu-Jaber, poet and essayist Lisa Suhair Majaj, playwright and actor Leila Buck, and writer and scholar Amira Jarmakani. I asked them why, as mixed-heritage Arab American woman who could “pass” as white, they instead choose to “flame” as Arab, boldly communicating their Arabic roots. (The language of the study, as the study itself, are works in progress as almost no one thinks that they “flame” — as one participant put it, is not hiding who you are the same as flaming?)

I found that their experiences show that identities are not static, they shape shift along with us and can serve as powerful tools to connect with broader communities for storytelling, activism and a sense-of-self.

Drop by at 9AM on Friday to hear all about it! (For those of you who won’t be at the conference, unfortunately, it won’t be streaming live on Skype just yet. Maybe next year. Email me for the cliff notes.)

P.S. Thanks to the A-B in my name I’m at the top of the list of presenters! Check it out here.