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 Topic: Are Manij and Hirsi Ali useless?

 (Read 5985 times)
  • 1« Previous thread | Next thread »
  • Are Manij and Hirsi Ali useless?
     OP - February 01, 2009, 10:14 PM

    The headline might be decieving. I would like to know what people in here thinks of these two ladies, Irshad Manhi and Ayaan Hirsi-Ali.  I've heard criticism that they are puppets of the conservative think tanks. I've heard that they are brave ladies. Manji has been called bin Laden worst enemy. But what are they worth? Or to rephrase that what is their books worth?

    Laila Lalami wrote in june 2006 a pretty harsh review, "The Missionary Position" of Irshad Manji's "The Trouble With Islam Today" and Hirsi-Ali's "The Caged Virgin: An Emancipation Proclamation for Women and Islam". I haven't myself read anything of Hirsi-Ali, so I wont be able to judge on the review of the later book. But the former, by Manji, seems in my opinion to be under criticism by Lalami, which it mostly does not deserve. It seems rather polemical.

    Fx

    Quote
    Unfortunately, like Hirsi Ali, Manji consistently gives individual examples of malfeasance and then extrapolates to the entire body of Muslims. In discussing World War II, for instance, she writes, "Let's be straight about what else happened during the Nazi years: Muslim complicity in the Holocaust." Here she trots out the story of Haj Amin al-Husayni, the mufti of Jerusalem who visited Berlin as a guest of Hitler and approved of his genocidal agenda. But how do we move from one cleric with authority in one congregation to "Muslim complicity"?


    Is it wrong to state that there was "muslim complicity". She's not stating that every muslim was taking part. She's is just stating that there where muslims who took part.

    Quote
    As with Hirsi Ali, Manji's expertise on her subject is incomplete. Take the following statement: "The Koran appears to be organized by size of verse--from longer to shorter--and not by chronology of revelation. How can anyone isolate the "earlier" passages, let alone read into them the "authentic" message of the Koran? We have to own up to the fact that the Koran's message is all over the bloody map." This is simply not true. Each sura of the Koran is identified by whether it is "Meccan" or "Medinan," depending on whether it was revealed early in the Prophet's spiritual life or later on, during his hegira in Medina.


    By reading the qur'an by itself does it leave much chronology or information about chronology? I think not. The knowledge of these things has to come mainly from outside the book.

    Quote
    In addition, and despite having written a book called The Trouble With Islam Today, Manji has not taken the trouble of learning to speak, read and write Arabic fluently, nor of visiting any Muslim country.


    I can see the point that she haven't visited any muslim country, but the issue of not being able to speak arabic is profoundly idiotic. She's not allowed (or accepted) to comment on the qur'an cause she's not able to speak arabic? This opinion on the christian texts would take us 800 years back (or more if one would not accept the latin version) in time.

    There's of course points which I think is valid, but back to the topic. What are your opinions on these writers (and for that matter other similar writers)?
  • Re: Are Manij and Hirsi Ali useless?
     Reply #1 - February 01, 2009, 10:42 PM

    I thought Manji's book was excellent. As you say the whole Arabic thing is not really relevant. Also since Manji is a lesbian I can understand why she'd rather not visit Muslim countries. However she has been to the middle East and been among Palestinians, as is made clear in her book.

    I suspect Lalami is just miffed because Manji is saying there are some things wrong that need to be fixed.

    Devious, treacherous, murderous, neanderthal, sub-human of the West. bunny
  • Re: Are Manij and Hirsi Ali useless?
     Reply #2 - February 01, 2009, 11:14 PM

    I agree with Osman on this one.  Manji's book was brilliant.  I also happen to have been reading it on an airplane so I was sniggering on the entire flight home!

    Although Ayan Hirsi Ali does have many valid points I think she is worse than Irshad Manji ever has been with tarring the entire Ummah with the same brush of extremism.  Whilst Manji calls for modern day ijtihad within Islam Hirsi Ali would rather outright purge the religion from the face of the earth.

    Atheism is a non-prophet organization.

    The sleeper has awakened -  Dune

    Give a man a fish, and you'll feed him for a day Give him a religion, and he'll starve to death while praying for a fish!
  • Re: Are Manij and Hirsi Ali useless?
     Reply #3 - February 02, 2009, 12:11 AM

    Hirsi should put down the crusader brush and use the feminist brush. She will end up with much more credibility as a woman who finds islam harmful to her, then a person with an axe to grind with islam and muslims.

    "Ask the slave girl; she will tell you the truth.' So the Apostle called Burayra to ask her. Ali got up and gave her a violent beating first, saying, 'Tell the Apostle the truth.'"
  • Re: Are Manij and Hirsi Ali useless?
     Reply #4 - February 02, 2009, 12:55 AM

    I only read Chapter One of Manji's book but I couldn't continue because I felt she was being disingenous. For example she blames Muslims for mistreating Ugandans, hence Idi Amin's mass explusion order. But that's not exactly what happened. It wasn't a Muslim thing - it was South Asians of various religions who looked down on Africans. Idi Amin was himself a Muslim. She must know this, hence I couldn't be bothered reading any more of her book. I don't mind Manji as a person though because I saw Faith Without Fear which profiled her and she seemed to be a sincere person. I like her mum more. There's a hideous part in the doco when they are thrown out of a mosque compound.

    As for Hirsi Ali, I like her too but again, her book has some embellishments in it - at least if one believes the Dutch documentary program Zembla. Still, her speaking voice is pleasant whereas Manji's is really annoying. I downloaded a copy of Ali reading her book Infidel and listened to all of it. It's actually a great autobiography and she's an immensely interesting person with some good points in her novel regarding Muslims and the West. For me though the most interesting parts were not to do with islam but about her life, Somalia, Siad Barre and so on. A great listen Smiley

    I actually agree with Baal about Ali. As a feminist she can kick some serious arse without palling around with pricks like van Gogh and Wilders.

    The language of the mob was only the language of public opinion cleansed of hypocrisy and restraint - Hannah Arendt.
  • Re: Are Manij and Hirsi Ali useless?
     Reply #5 - February 02, 2009, 02:37 AM

    As far as I know, Laila Lalami is not at all a practising Muslim, if she is even Muslim, so I don't think she has that sort of agenda at hand. 

    Manji takes things that happened to her in her personal life and makes it about Islam. It might be your true story but that doesn't make it objective truth.  I don't really like her at all, and her lack of knowledge of Islaam just makes me tired.

    [this space for rent]
  • Re: Are Manij and Hirsi Ali useless?
     Reply #6 - February 02, 2009, 05:18 AM

    Is Manji an apostate? I thought she was still a Muslim. As far as I know, she called herself a "reformed minded Muslim," which to me translates to in denial of her apostasy, or at least, her lack of belief.

    Call me TAP TAP! for I am THE ASS PATTER!
  • Re: Are Manij and Hirsi Ali useless?
     Reply #7 - February 02, 2009, 05:34 AM

    She identifies herself as muslim, but most traditionalist minded will not accept her (I don't think she prays regularly, heterodox views, lesbian...).

    I read her book when I was still a pious salafi and I couldn't take her seriously, I could refute all her points. She's been to the middle-east, but as a guest of Israel, who she praised for standing up to the Palestinians Roll Eyes.

    I'll have to go through her book again, and Ali's too.

    I chose to get circumcised at 17, don't tell me I never believed.
  • Re: Are Manij and Hirsi Ali useless?
     Reply #8 - February 02, 2009, 05:54 AM

    Here's a review of The Caged Virgin by Fareena Alam who is a practicing Muslim and another one by Irfan Yusuf who is a cultural Muslim.


    The language of the mob was only the language of public opinion cleansed of hypocrisy and restraint - Hannah Arendt.
  • Re: Are Manij and Hirsi Ali useless?
     Reply #9 - February 02, 2009, 08:16 AM

    I don't have a great deal of knowledge about Irshad Manji, I know that she's a lesbian and her attempt to find justifications for her sexual orientation in religion wouldn't be only difficult in Islam but in Christianity, Judaism and other faiths as well. Of course, she wouldn't need to fear for her life in other faiths.

    Ayaan Hirsi Ali's account is interesting and the genital mutilation part horrifying, it was also what led me to be deeply interested in FGM in Muslim communities outside Africa. The Bohras do circumcise their women, and my grandmom complains that it ruined her life in one more way My grandmom metions such details, its embarrasing, and I won't repeat them here. My grandmom also complains how I and my brother ruin her old age and her social life when we stay with her for our Christmas holidays, and I don't take her complaints very seriously. However, from what I've learnt from other Bohra women, female circumcision involves drawing just a drop or a few drops of blood. Even this sounds scary to me, but if its truly like this, then pricking one's ears genitals' is just as harmful or harmless than pricking one's genitalia, and probably less than male circumcision. The way this circumcision reached India, and the Indonesian archipelago was certainly through Islam, but it doesn't seem very harmful.

    My beef with Hirsi Ali is that had she been an Egyptian Coptic Christian woman or a Nigerian Christian woman, she'd have suffered the same, but of course she couldn't get this fame out of it. Telling people that its mostly Muslims who do it today whereas its done by Christians, Jews and animists in the African region from where she comes and the vast majority of the world's Muslims have no idea of the practice is misleading and helps to stir up more Islamophobia.

    She's more part of the problem with Islam than part of the solution IMO...

    World renowned historian Will Durant"...the Islamic conquest of India is probably the bloodiest story in history. It is a discouraging tale, for its evident moral is that civilization is a precious good, whose delicate complex order and freedom can at any moment be overthrown..."
  • Re: Are Manij and Hirsi Ali useless?
     Reply #10 - February 02, 2009, 08:39 AM

    Yeah, I think Hirsi Ali plays to the crowd, in her case the crowd is Islam-haters. Infidel was interesting though, because her life has been interesting.

    Also interesting is circumcision among Bohras. I had no idea. In Malaysia (traditionally a Shafi country) I know that they too have circumcision, but "it's just a nick" to phrase my (non-Muslim) mother. It should be noted that she grew up in a small town in an overwhelmingly Muslim state and the kindness and neighbourliness displayed by her Muslim neighbours has left a lasting and positive impression of Islam on her.

    She might be describing the so-called sunna circumcision. I remember reading an article in The Age by the late Pamela Bone where she claims to have been told by Shaikh Fehmi of Preston Mosque that "You probably don't need it but women in hot countries do". I can't find the original source - the only places on the Net quoting it are the usual Islam-hating sites, but I do remember reading it in hard copy in the aforementioned rag.

    The language of the mob was only the language of public opinion cleansed of hypocrisy and restraint - Hannah Arendt.
  • Re: Are Manij and Hirsi Ali useless?
     Reply #11 - February 02, 2009, 08:43 AM

    Quote
    Unfortunately, like Hirsi Ali, Manji consistently gives individual examples of malfeasance and then extrapolates to the entire body of Muslims. In discussing World War II, for instance, she writes, "Let's be straight about what else happened during the Nazi years: Muslim complicity in the Holocaust." Here she trots out the story of Haj Amin al-Husayni, the mufti of Jerusalem who visited Berlin as a guest of Hitler and approved of his genocidal agenda. But how do we move from one cleric with authority in one congregation to "Muslim complicity"?


    Perhaps Manji should read this:

    http://www.jewcy.com/post/willing_heroes_interview_robert_satloff



    Quote from: The Washington Post
    Robert Satloff is a man with a mission. He believes that if contemporary Arabs knew about Arabs who rescued Jews during the Holocaust, they would reject the Holocaust denial and anti-Semitism that are now so prevalent in the Arab/Muslim world. This book tells of his quest to track down the history of those Arabs' deeds

    ....

    But Satloff has discovered "noble, selfless deeds" by Arabs. In normal times, such acts would have been routine, but during World War II, routine kindness was in short supply. When Vichy officials offered Algerian Arabs windfall profits if they took over Jewish property, not a single Arab in Algiers participated. (Vichy had no trouble finding willing Frenchmen.) On a Friday in 1941, religious leaders throughout Algiers delivered sermons warning Muslims against participation in schemes to strip Jews of their property. Some Jews were able to get false identity papers at the Grand Mosque in Paris. In 1940, two months after the Germans entered Paris, the Germans warned the head of the mosque to cease assisting Jews. In short, Arabs behaved like many Europeans during the Holocaust: Some helped Jews; others persecuted them or benefited from their persecution; the majority looked the other way.

    ...


    I chose to get circumcised at 17, don't tell me I never believed.
  • Re: Are Manij and Hirsi Ali useless?
     Reply #12 - February 02, 2009, 08:45 AM

    I remember reading an article in The Age by the late Pamela Bone where she claims to have been told by Shaikh Fehmi of Preston Mosque that "You probably don't need it but women in hot countries do".

    So I've heard the same. "Marry a sister from the desert, she'll tire you out!" Wink

    I chose to get circumcised at 17, don't tell me I never believed.
  • Re: Are Manij and Hirsi Ali useless?
     Reply #13 - February 03, 2009, 08:51 PM

    Hirsi's story is tragic... but she's no revolutionary.

    and manji... she's out to make a buck. she doesn't have original thought. All she did was mint money on the sensationalism of her story. I met her once... she's a good person but i expected something more from her... someone who could bring about real change. far from it; her project ijtihad even shut down due to lack of activity, money, interest whatever...

    it's sad and pathetic.

    TRASH - The Rationalist Apostate Society for Humanity!

    Take a look for a few laughs and thoughtful discussions with a wide range of audience - fellow apostates, Muslims, sufis, non-Muslims, Christians, etc

    http://thetrashbin.wordpress.com
  • Re: Are Manij and Hirsi Ali useless?
     Reply #14 - February 03, 2009, 10:13 PM

      " you might not need it , but women in hot countries do "

         WTF?!!!

       Please explain to this dumb kufr why exactly women in hot countries  need to have their genitals mutilated .
  • Re: Are Manij and Hirsi Ali useless?
     Reply #15 - February 03, 2009, 10:21 PM

    Its some ignoramus idea about women in hot countries having higher sex drives.  And obviously a woman with a higher sex drive needs to be mutilated.    Roll Eyes

    "Befriend them not, Oh murtads, and give them neither parrot nor bunny."  - happymurtad's advice on trolls.
  • Re: Are Manij and Hirsi Ali useless?
     Reply #16 - February 03, 2009, 10:28 PM

    I only read that they mature faster, never heard they also have high libido  Cheesy

    I was not blessed with the ability to have blind faith. I cant beleive something just because someone says its true.
  • Re: Are Manij and Hirsi Ali useless?
     Reply #17 - February 03, 2009, 10:34 PM

    I read both Irshad Manji's book and Hirsi Ali's books (both - the first - caged virgin - was very weak) and I admire and respect both women for their courage and and applaude and agree with many of the things they say.

    It is however true that neither speak from either a position of scholarship or previous deep devotion. It is also true that there are generalizations and inaccuracies. But I don't think that makes their overall message any less valid.
  • Re: Are Manij and Hirsi Ali useless?
     Reply #18 - February 03, 2009, 10:56 PM

     " I don't think that makes their overall message any less valid "

      Good . I really object to this idea that someone has to be able to recite the entire koran backwards , and in arabic , before they're allowed to express an opinion on some of the practices it's been invoked in justification of . The basic concept of ordering your life according to a literal interpretation of one ancient manuscript is frankly absurd - whichever book you plump for .

         As for the  'girls in hot countries maturing earlier ' argument , isn't that just a sly attempt at justifying child marriages ?
  • Re: Are Manij and Hirsi Ali useless?
     Reply #19 - February 04, 2009, 01:16 AM

    Quote
    As for the  'girls in hot countries maturing earlier ' argument , isn't that just a sly attempt at justifying child marriages ?


    Yes, probly.  There's no evidence for it that I've ever seen.

    "Befriend them not, Oh murtads, and give them neither parrot nor bunny."  - happymurtad's advice on trolls.
  • Re: Are Manij and Hirsi Ali useless?
     Reply #20 - February 04, 2009, 01:44 AM

     Me neither .
       Even if it was true , it's still objectionable . There have been occasional cases of girls as young as seven showing signs of puberty , that doesn't mean they're emotionally ready to be married off .
  • Re: Are Manij and Hirsi Ali useless?
     Reply #21 - February 04, 2009, 07:48 AM

    I read both Irshad Manji's book and Hirsi Ali's books (both - the first - caged virgin - was very weak) and I admire and respect both women for their courage and and applaude and agree with many of the things they say.

    It is however true that neither speak from either a position of scholarship or previous deep devotion. It is also true that there are generalizations and inaccuracies. But I don't think that makes their overall message any less valid.


    I admire both women too, especially Hirsi Ali, not just for the stuff she writes, but also due to the kind of life she's led. She managed to rise above her circumstances in life, and while she's undoubtedly very brave, she'd be less than human had she not been slightly prejudiced towards Islam given what she's had to endure. While Irshad Manji is pretty balanced, Hirsi Ali's rather close to  Ali Sina's viewpoint at times.

    Female circumcision among the Bohras is also either the sunna circumcision described by abdalwali, or some similar harmless symbolic procedure. I don't think its fair to call that sort of circumcision mutilation any more than its fair to call male circumcision mutilation. The fact is that there are different types of male and female circumcision, and thanks to Hirsi Ali's account, everybody (well all Islamophobes anyway) immediately connect female circumcision to her tragic account, and her tragic account to Islam.

    I was once reading an article on Jihad Watch where the issue was female circumcision and Robert Spencer immediately linked it to Islam. Some Muslim commenter pointed out that circumcision is practically non existent in the Indian sub continent. The bunch of Islamophobes on that site immediately started writing about Bohra female circumcision, without bothering to find out more about what sort of circumcision Bohras do, and of course Bohras are a tiny minority in the Muslim population of the sub continent, so the Muslim commenter was right in claiming that its almost non existent in the sub continent. A commenter who identified himself as "wild jew" began rebuking Muslims for robbing women's pleasure whereas Ethiopian Jews regularly circumcise their women too. Hirsi Ali has pandered to these stereotypes, I don't know whether deliberately or not. There's another famous Somali author on the issue of FGM-Waris Dirie, an internationally acclaimed fashion model. She too has described her FGM and her flight out of Africa in her book Desert Flower. Thats' just as interesting and inspiring a book as Hirsi Ali's book. But she doesn't blame her circumcision on Islam, and perhaps not coincidentally she doesn't get the same attention. Has anyone here read her book or even googled Waris Dirie to read her account online?

    The problem is that, its not just Islam which can mould someone's life but the brand of Islam practised. Had Hirsi Ali lived in Muslim Senegal or Sierra Leone in Africa rather than Somalia, the kind of Islam she'd come across would be very tolerant and inclusive. Had she got AIDS in Christian Swaziland due to the Church's ban on condoms, maybe she'd blame Christianity, but again I doubt she'd get the same mileage out of it.

    There are tolerant Muslims and ex Muslims who hope to discover ways to reform Islam, and then there are Islamophobes like Sina and Spencer who hope to wipe Islam off the map and for whom no good human can ever reconcile their goodness with Islam.

    What a tightrope ex Muslims need to walk. Sigh!

    World renowned historian Will Durant"...the Islamic conquest of India is probably the bloodiest story in history. It is a discouraging tale, for its evident moral is that civilization is a precious good, whose delicate complex order and freedom can at any moment be overthrown..."
  • Re: Are Manij and Hirsi Ali useless?
     Reply #22 - February 04, 2009, 04:40 PM

    i hear ya, sister.

    TRASH - The Rationalist Apostate Society for Humanity!

    Take a look for a few laughs and thoughtful discussions with a wide range of audience - fellow apostates, Muslims, sufis, non-Muslims, Christians, etc

    http://thetrashbin.wordpress.com
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