International Development, Community, and Environment

Title

Resisting Blackness, Embracing Rightness: How Muslim Arab Sudanese Women Negotiate Their Identity in the Diaspora

Document Type

Article

Abstract

This article considers how a Muslim cultural discourse of 'propriety' has influenced Muslim Arab Sudanese ethnic identity in two locations and time periods in an expanding diaspora. Focusing in particular on women and their embodied practices of whitening and propriety in Egypt in the nineties and the United Kingdom a decade later, I argue that the recent turn towards Muslim expressions of Sudaneseness is a form of resistance to racial labelling. While Sudanese have rejected being labelled 'black' in Egypt and in the UK, their renegotiation of a Muslim religious identity in the diaspora nevertheless confirms a racialized Sudanese ethnicity. This study contributes to the rethinking of ethnicity in a transnational space where ethnic nationalism and globalized Islamic discourse intersect with local histories and hierarchies of race and gender. © 2012 Taylor and Francis Group, LLC.

Publication Title

Ethnic and Racial Studies

Publication Date

2-1-2012

Volume

35

Issue

2

First Page

218

Last Page

237

ISSN

0141-9870

DOI

10.1080/01419870.2011.592594

Keywords

Britain, Egypt, race, Sudanese diaspora, whiteness, women

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