Migration and Belonging: Brown Muslim Women’s Experience in Australia
Singh, Supriya, & Babacan, Alperhan, MIGRATION, BELONGING AND THE NATION STATE, Newcastle (UK): Cambridge Scholars Publishing, pp. 105-132 (ISBN 978-1-4438-2081-3), 2010
18 Pages Posted: 22 Apr 2012
Date Written: April 21, 2010
Australia has a small population of Muslim migrants as compared to Western Europe or North America. Over the last few years, Muslims have become a fifth column or a pariah, therefore migration debates largely revolve around their experiences as homogenous, and remain focused on issues of identity; integration; sense of belonging to Australia; Hijab; and Jihad, especially after numerous incidents linked with potential acts of terrorism. Muslim women have become symbols of religious authenticity by wearing hijab, or religious oppression by denouncing religion or highlighting their oppressive experiences and sexuality. In between, are located brown Muslim women of South Asian Diaspora, which remain insignificant, largely because their public presence is overlooked since they are neither “exotic” nor “erotic” like their counterparts from Middle East or horns of Africa. This paper attempts to look at these Brown Muslim women’s experiences of migration and belonging in Australia and how they negotiate their place both at “Home” and in public space. This paper relies on numerous formal and informal discussions with these women and explores their experiences largely ignored by mainstream debates.
Keywords: Australia, Migration, Belonging, South Asian Women
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