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Muslim Women Desire: Studies of Women in Istanbul on How They Take Care of Their Self-Image

muslim women desire


Sertaç Sehlikoglu is an affiliated lecturer in Social Anthropology at the University of Cambridge. She studied women’s changing habits, leisure, and self-formation in Istanbul. Sehlikoglu shows us how women, not only in Istanbul, but in larger Middle East region, are using thier power, intelectual agencies and social status to create a favorable condition for htier personal desires.  Sara Jamshidi talk with Sertac Sehlikoglu about the making of Muslim women desire in the Middle East.


Working Out Desire: Women, Sport, and Self-Making in Istanbul


By Sertaç Sehlikoglu



Amazon notes:

Working Out Desire: Women, Sport, and Self Making in Istanbul examines sport making as an object of desire shared by a broad and diverse group of Istanbulite women. Sehlikoglu follows the lat­est anthropological scholarship that defines desire beyond the moment it is felt, experienced, or even yearned for, and as something that is formed through a series of social and historical makings.

Sehlikoglu traces Istanbulite women’s ever-increasing interest in exercise not merely to an interest in sport, but also to an interest in establishing a new self—one that attempts to escape from conventional feminine duties—and an investment in forming a more agentive, desiring, self.

muslim women desireWorking Out Desire develops a multilayered analysis of how women use spor meraki to take themselves out of the domestic zone physically, emotionally, and also imaginatively. Sehlikoglu pushes back against the conventional boundaries of scholarly interest in Muslim women as pious subjects. Instead, it places women’s desiring subjectivity at its center and traces women’s agentive aspirations in the way they bend the norms which are embedded in the multiple patriarchal ideologies (i.e. nationalism, religion, aesthetics) which operate on their selves.

Working out Desire presents the ways in which women’s changing habits, leisure, and self-formation in the Muslim world and the Middle East are connected to their agentive capacities to shift and transform their conditions and socio-cultural capabilities.

Working Out Desire brings together the often disparate fields of sport, desire, sexuality, and politics, combining it with rich ethnography and the skillful deployment of theory. A whole new way of thinking about body politics., Pardis Mahdavi, Arizona State University





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Interview with  Sertaç Sehlikoglu for Peacemindedly Podcast

(will be uploaded on Nov. 12)



YouTube Raw Footage of Conversation between Sertaç Sehlikoglu and Sara Jamshidi for Peacemindedly Podcast

(will be uploaded on Nov. 12)




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