Introduction to Women Against Fundamentalism: Stories of Dissent and Solidarity

Book chapter


Dhaliwal, Sukhwant and Yuval-Davis, N. 2014. Introduction to Women Against Fundamentalism: Stories of Dissent and Solidarity. in: Women Against Fundamentalism: Stories of Dissent and Solidarity Lawrence and Wishart. pp. 7-51
AuthorsDhaliwal, Sukhwant and Yuval-Davis, N.
Abstract

Th is book celebrates – while also acknowledging the huge challenges
it faces – a particular kind of feminism, one that has been concerned
with challenging both fundamentalism and racism. It consists of the
autobiographical political narratives of feminist activists of diff erent
ethnic and religious backgrounds who have been members of Women
Against Fundamentalism (WAF), a feminist anti-racist and antifundamentalist
organisation that was established in London in 1989,
at the heart of the Salman Rushdie aff air.
Political narratives have been described as ‘stories people tell about
how the world works’, the ways in which they explain the engines of
political change, and as refl ections on the role people see themselves
and their group playing in their ongoing struggles.1 And the contributors
to this book off er just such narratives – they talk about the
trajectories of their lives, and how they see themselves and the groups
to which they belong in relation to the wider political struggles in
which they have been involved. WAF women have shared solidarity
and trust, based on common political values, but, as can be seen from
the chapters of this book, their perspectives – as well as their personal/
political histories – have also diff ered.2 Th is variety of voices is signifi -
cant not only for these women as individuals but also for WAF as a
political organisation. In this introduction we highlight what we as
editors perceive to be the most important issues for WAF’s activism
throughout its history. However, the book has been constructed in
such a way that reading all the chapters will itself provide a more
pluralistic and contested fl avour of WAF’s politics.
Th is introduction outlines the rationale for the book, introduces
WAF and its political context, explains the book’s theoretical and
methodological framework, and explores some of the themes that have
emerged from the activists’ stories.

Book titleWomen Against Fundamentalism: Stories of Dissent and Solidarity
Page range7-51
Year2014
PublisherLawrence and Wishart
Publication dates
Print07 Jul 2014
Publication process dates
Deposited05 Aug 2016
ISBN9781909831025
Web address (URL)https://www.lwbooks.co.uk/book/women-against-fundamentalism
Publisher's version
License
CC BY-NC-ND
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https://repository.uel.ac.uk/item/85974

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