Events

The Racial/Spatial Politics of Banning the Muslim Woman's Niqab

Hong Kong Theatre, Clement House, LSE

Speaker

Sherene H. Razack

Sherene H. Razack

Distinguished Professor and the Penny Kanner Endowed Chair in Gender Studies, UCLA

Chair

Marsha Henry

Marsha Henry

Associate Professor and Interim Director of the Centre for Women, Peace and Security

Join Sherene H. Razack in the discussion The Racial/Spatial Politics of Banning the Muslim Woman's Niqab. Bans, whether travel bans or bans on the wearing of the niqab in public space, mark Muslims as neither inside nor outside the law. They usher Muslims into a spatial void. Occupying a space where law has declared its own absence, the banned Niqabi is denied the right to public space even as she is formally a citizen. What do bans provide to those who are compelled to engage in it?

Bans create a public that is made secure by the eviction of a threatening foreignness. To look at the niqab is to be altered, derailed from the path of racial and sexual mastery, and confronted with the possibility that we do not know, either who she is, or who we are. Faced with the prospect of alteration, we choreograph the encounter with Muslim women through bans on her apparel. Bans enable us to refuse to see, to block from our line of vision the sight that unsettles and that derails us from our plans of mastery. Understood as dreams of possession, bans pre-empt any recognition of the other’s humanity. But this pre-emption troubles and we are haunted by it.  Our rage at niqabi women, expressed in the command “yield to me” conceals the ambivalence and desire that marks the encounter.

Sherene H. Razack is Distinguished Professor and the Penny Kanner Endowed Chair in Gender Studies, UCLA. Her books include: Dying from Improvement: Inquests and Inquiries into Indigenous Deaths in Custody (2015); At the Limits of Justice: Women of Colour On Terror (2014, ed. With Suvendrini Perera); States of Race.   (2011, co-editor with Malinda Smith and Sunera Thobani); Casting Out: Race and the Eviction of Muslims From Western Law and Politics (2008); Race, Space and the Law (2004)ed. Dark Threats and White Knights: The Somalia Affair, Peacekeeping and the New Imperialism (2004). Looking White People in the Eye 1998.

From time to time there are changes to event details so we strongly recommend checking back on this listing on the day of the event if you plan to attend.

 

Whilst we are hosting this listing, LSE Events does not take responsibility for the running and administration of this event. While we take responsible measures to ensure that accurate information is given here (for instance by checking that the room has been booked) this event is ultimately the responsibility of the organisation presenting the event.

Accessibility

If you are planning to attend this event and would like details on how to get here and what time to arrive, as well as on accessibility and special requirements, please refer to LSE Events FAQ. LSE aims to ensure that people have equal access to these public events, but please contact the event’s organiser as far as possible in advance if you have any access requirements, so that arrangements, where possible, can be made. If the event is ticketed, please ensure you get in touch in advance of the ticket release date. Access Guides to all our venues can be viewed online.

 

Twitter

LSE Gender LSEGenderTweet

RT @LSEReviewBooks: 'For feminists who are trying to learn about feminism in the digital age, and how their own activism can contribute to…

4 days ago

Reply Retweet Favorite

LSE Gender LSEGenderTweet

RT @LSEDataScience: 🗣️ "If men continue to dominate computing, the oppression of women will endure". We are proud to highlight Dr Siân Bro…

4 days ago

Reply Retweet Favorite

  Sign up for news about events