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ReOrient:  The Journal of Critical Muslim Studies

ReOrient 2.2 2017


The Islamophobic Inheritance of the Resurrected Saint Paul:
From F. C. Baur’s Judeo-Christianity to the Event 126

Anya Topolski

Representations of Post-Revolutionary Iran by Iranian-American
Memoirists: Patterns of Access to the Media and Communicative Events 146

Seyed Mohammd Marandi and Zeinab Ghasemi Tari

Hashtag Comedy: From Muslim Rage to #Muslimrage 160

Liz Sills

How Muslims Became Corn 175

Uzma Jamil

Book Reviews

Gerdien Jonker: The Ahmadiyya Quest for Religious Progress:
Missionizing Europe 1900–1965

Humayun K. Ansari

Francisco Bethancourt: Racisms: From the Crusades to the Twentieth Century 195

Ian Law

Jerry Brotton: This Orient Isle: Elizabethan England and the Islamic World 198

Mohammad Siddique Seddon

Jeanette S. Jouili: Pious Practice and Secular Constraints: Women in
the Islamic Revival in Europe

Jennifer A. Selby

Andrea Mura: The Symbolic Scenarios of Islamism: A Study in
Islamic Political Thought

Emin Poljarevic

Cengiz Sisman: The Burden of Silence: Sabbatai Sevi and the Evolution
of the Ottoman-Turkish Dönmes

Turkay Salim Nefes

Subscriptions 214


Anya Topolski

Abstract: It is my aim to demonstrate how the nineteenth-century theologian F. C. Baur’s influence reappears in the resurrected Paul which has a central role in Badiou and Žižek’s respective projects. This essay begins with a sketch of the historical, theological, and political context of F. C. Baur’s writings. In a nutshell, Baur’s Hegelian-inspired reading of Paul relies on the explicit distinction between Pauline (or Gentile) Christianity and Judeo-Christianity. I then move to a selection of Badiou and Žižek’s writings on Paul in order to establish Baur’s considerable influence. This influence is most tangible in their accounts of Paul’s pivotal role as the militant revolutionary figure that brought about the paradigmatic Truth-Event. While much has been said of both Badiou and Žižek’s antisemitism, not enough attention has been paid to its islamophobic inheritance.

Keywords: antisemitism, islamophobia, Judeo-Christianity, orientalism, Paul, Žižek, Badiou, F. C. Baur

Representations of Post- Revolutionary Iran by Iranian-American Memoirists: Patterns of Access to the Media and Communicative Events

Seyed Mohammd Marandi and Zeinab Ghasemi Tari

Abstract: One major element in the discursive reproduction of power and dominance is the structures and strategies of “access” to discourse. Using Van Dijk’s argument of dominance and patterns of the preferential access to public discourse, this article attempts to offer more insight into general political, sociocultural, and economic aspects of “knowledge production” on post-revolutionary Iran in the United States in the ways Iranian American memoirs are promoted and publicized through major publishing companies, the popular press, and the mainstream media. Such representations strengthen and reinforce the political discourse surrounding Iran as an “undemocratic” and “barbaric” entity. This article discusses the ways in which the perceptions and views of a minority of Iranians, which often move in parallel with the demonized image of Iran in the United States, are vocalized and promoted through “privileged access” to discourse and “means of communication.”

Keywords: discourse, diaspora, knowledge production, privileged access, publication,
Iranian Americans


Liz Sills

Abstract: After Newsweek published an article in 2012 entitled “Muslim Rage and the Last Gasp of Islamic Hate,” Twitter proliferated with jokes under the hashtag #MuslimRage. These funny one-liners acted as rebuttals to the negative affect of the Newsweek article by opposing its images of uncontrolled ideological anger with funny quips about the innocuous nature of everyday Muslim life. This analysis argues that #MuslimRage tweets became sensational because of their unique form of argumentation through humor that could only happen through Twitter. Because tweets are iconic and enthymematic, they make arguments that function as a form of individualized, massively resonant counter-propaganda. For Muslims, digital jokes created cognitive space of action that directly combated negative stereotyping and public ridicule.

Keywords: comedy, Twitter, Islam, cultural studies, media studies


Uzma Jamil

Abstract: Over the past 16 years, the global “war on terror” has expanded in scope, ranging from US-led military interventions in Iraq and Afghanistan, domestic counter-terrorism and counter-radicalization legislation, and mass surveillance of Muslim communities to the “Muslim ban” on citizens of seven Muslim-majority countries from entering the US. This expansion in scope has normalized the idea of Muslims as threats to and within Western societies. This article analyzes this process of securitization, how Muslims are constructed as terrorists, and threats to national security, through a discussion of three books that illustrate how violence, politics, and state power are intricately related in the production of the “war on terror.” It advances a critique of the relationship between state power and the construction of knowledge about Muslims as terrorists, whether in the US government-supported counter-radicalization industry or in the documentation of Muslim experiences as prisoners in Guantanamo Bay’s prison. Last, this article discusses Muslim agency and the position of racialized scholars in the “war on terror” as a question of authority and scholarship. It notes the gap between those whose voices are legitimized as “experts” on “explaining Muslims” in ways that conform to accepted assumptions about Muslims as threats, and the voices and experiences of racialized scholars whose expertise is considered not “objective” enough.

Keywords: Muslims, war on terror, knowledge, Orientalism, securitization, violence

Book Reviews


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