“Romance imagines peace, security, and ease precisely because there is dissension, insecurity, and difficulty” (Janice Radway, Reading the Romance 1984, p. 15) Lately I’ve become very interested in how heterosexual Malay-Muslim women talk about romantic intimacy in their pursuit of potential partners, and why sexual violence features so significantly in Malay language romance novels. The… Continue reading ‘Romantic’ sexual violence, mediated intimacy and the single Muslim woman in Malaysia
Seksualiti merupakan satu perkataan yang secara lazimnya dihubungkaitkan dengan hubungan seks antara lelaki dan perempuan. Namun, ini adalah satu pemahaman istilah yang terlalu sempit. Sebaliknya, seksualiti merangkumi segala yang bersangkut-paut dengan perasaan cinta, hasrat (desire), hubungan intim (intimacy), perkahwinan, kawalan sosial, politik, ekonomi, dan agama. Berpegang tangan antara kekasih adalah satu tanda seksualiti seseorang. Seksualiti… Continue reading Pengajian Gender untuk Semua #1: Pengenalan kepada konsep ‘seksualiti’ dan Queer Theory
This is my only column on the Malay Mail Online for the month of May this year. I haven’t been productive on Malay Mail Online as I would like to be and that’s likely to be because I’m doing so much writing elsewhere. The development of a child’s sexuality is a taboo issue. Although there… Continue reading Between sex and abstinence there is education and choice
When I first heard about the film Violette (2013, dir. Martin Provost), I had little knowledge about the life and work of the French writer, Violette Leduc (1907-1972), on which the film was based. What drew me to the film was the fact that she was one time a protégé of Simone de Beauvoir. Imagine… Continue reading Sound, fury and écriture féminine in Violette (2013): a review
I have an article published in a special issue on LGBT identities and cultures in Southeast Asia in Südostasien, a journal published by Stiftung Asienhaus, on LGBTQ identities in Malaysia today. It has been translated into German from English. Below is the article in English: Source: Wikimedia Commons Malaysia stands slightly part from its neighbours… Continue reading Competing ideological struggles and LGBTQ identities in multicultural Malaysia
Today we have a guest blog by Kaberi Dutta. Kaberi who is a nineteen year old Malaysian studying Social Anthropology and Law at SOAS, and hoping to alert people to the importance of feminism, one argument at a time. ***** Having grown up as a Malaysian Indian girl, who studied at an International school in… Continue reading Guest blog: Why can’t women wear short skirts?
My column on the Malay Mail, The economics of virginity in patriarchal Malaysia, published 2nd February 2015: Let’s forget that the hymen is central to the idea of (female) virginity. Focus instead on virginity as a cultural and social form of control. When we do this, we will discover that virginity is only a construct… Continue reading New column on the Malay Mail: The economics of virginity in patriarchal Malaysia
Upon arriving home from secondary school many years ago, I was slightly taken aback to find that someone had stuck ‘Slut’ on a post-it note on my backpack. I knew what the word meant and I was sure I was not that, thought my socially-awkward, pimply 15 year old self. Years later in university, and… Continue reading Is being called a prostitute misogynistic?
First published in The Malay Mail on 29th January 2014. As someone in the business of reading, writing, and reviewing academic articles, I have seen the good, the bad, and the ugly. Writing academic articles is not easy and it rarely gets any easier after years, even decades (so I’m told) in academia. So when… Continue reading Scholarship on the scrap heap of an ailing higher education
First published on The State Magazine on 10 July 2013 Toilets: we need them as we all pee and shit. It seems as if our most basic homeostatic functions exist outside of time and space, abiding by their own internal laws. This article, however, is about the laws that are external to the corporeal vessel:… Continue reading Mapping gender in public toilets of the non-Western world