Structures of feeling and dark laughter: A few more publications for 2019

Utter neglect has plagued this blog yet again. To my detriment I’m sure. I’ve missed opportunities to properly self-promote my work on this blog, the very place that launched my life in writing. To remedy that, here are some rather belated updates. 1. Back in February 2018, my friends Adil Johan, Nazry Bahrawi and me… Continue reading Structures of feeling and dark laughter: A few more publications for 2019

The New Malay Woman, a modern cosmopolitan subject

Plenty of research are re-discovering cosmopolitan female subjects and the ‘modern girl’ in the late colonial and early postcolonial eras. In my own work, I’ve added to the list the ‘New Malay Woman’ who was more than a consumer and image, but a literary voice and agent of change: [She is ] independent, highly-educated, urban… Continue reading The New Malay Woman, a modern cosmopolitan subject

On women’s laughter in Malay horror (Part 2)

This is Part 2 of a two-part post on the pontianak and women’s laughter in Malaysian horror cinema. Read Part 1. Consider laughter’s capacity to upset and as a vehicle of resistance. More specifically when women laugh at men, laughing at patriarchy, laughing at power, laughing from below. Situated below speech in the register of… Continue reading On women’s laughter in Malay horror (Part 2)

#MeToo and the deafening Malaysian silence

I’ve talked about sexual harassment quite a bit. In light of the Harvey Weinstein scandal and the global domino effect it had across other industries and institutions within and outside the US, it seemed inevitable that Malaysian liberal circles felt compelled to join in the conversation, albeit in small-scale curated debates and scattered hashtag activism… Continue reading #MeToo and the deafening Malaysian silence

On women’s laughter in Malay horror (Part 1)

This is an edited version of a conference paper presented at the Inter-Asia Cultural Studies conference in Seoul, South Korea in July 2017 The meaning of laughter, seen as springing from humour and moral degradation, has been a matter of philosophical preoccupation with human morality since the ancient time of Aristotle. And for much of… Continue reading On women’s laughter in Malay horror (Part 1)

Free hair as critical subjectivity

Something exciting is afoot in Iran. Since 2014, women have been wanting to throw off their hijab and live more authentic lives. Led by journalist Masih Alinejad, many have taken to social media to protest against compulsory hijab. Using the slogan ‘My stealthy freedom’, they post photos and videos of themselves defiantly unveiled. In response… Continue reading Free hair as critical subjectivity

On being like Robyn Penrose

Robyn Penrose is a newly minted lecturer in women’s studies and English literature who specialises in the ‘industrial novel’, fiction written in the mid-1800’s that reflected the values and anxieties of the British industrial revolution. She is a feminist academic with an unflagging belief in uprooting social injustice inside and outside the classroom. She joins… Continue reading On being like Robyn Penrose

The Women’s March in Jakarta

I was in Jakarta for a quick three-day trip to attend the Women’s March last Saturday morning. The Women’s March was a moving carnival of hundreds of people; mostly young Indonesian women, a few genderqueer individuals, men, and some white people. Is the Women’s March ‘Indonesian’ in spite of its name? I’d say the Women’s… Continue reading The Women’s March in Jakarta

My first book: Gender and Islam in Indonesian Cinema

I feel pleased and humbled to announce the publication of my first book, Gender and Islam in Indonesian Cinema (2017 Palgrave Macmillan. Chapters can purchased separately here) based on my field research between 2011 and 2012 in Jakarta and Yogyakarta where I was privileged to interview film directors, film producers, festival organisers, film critics and enthusiasts in… Continue reading My first book: Gender and Islam in Indonesian Cinema

Post-liberal jihad: Muslim feminism during a time of cruelty and despair

I’ve written a commissioned article for The G-Blog on the present challenges of Muslim feminism in Malaysia and globally, linking it to wider structures of war, (post)-neoliberal economics, and the rise of alt-right political narratives. Excerpt: Situating Muslim feminism in the bigger picture Let’s face it, times are bad. Full-time and secure paid work are… Continue reading Post-liberal jihad: Muslim feminism during a time of cruelty and despair