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We are All Revolutionaries Here

We are All Revolutionaries Here
Militarism, Political Islam and Gender in Pakistan

First Edition
  • Aneela Zeb Babar - Researcher and consultant working on Islam, gender, migration and popular culture.

April 2017 | 196 pages | SAGE YODA Press

What might link a group of middle-class Pakistani women sipping coffee demurely in a living room, with the fiery young women in black burqas threatening shopkeepers in Islamabad?

When and how do an adolescent girl’s aspirations translate into the maturing of a social and political revolution in urban Pakistan?

Will this woman find a resolution to her angst or, like Rosie the Riveter, retreat to her cloister?

Does Bhutto’s death mark the death knell of secular female political participation in Pakistan? The individuals in these pages span over two decades (1988-2008) of Pakistan’s tryst with a difficult history, trying to decipher the convoluted equation of militarism, political Islam and gender politics.

We Are All Good Muslims Here: Hybrid Spaces, Contesting Constituencies and Pakistan’s Social Revolution
Cultural Underpinnings: Pakistani Muslim Women’s Conception of Hijab in Islam
On Gendered Spatial and Ritual Politics in Canberra and Islamabad
Texts of War
Our Lady of Lal Masjid

The book is important to understand the relations between political Islam and gender.


Free Press Journal, 1 October 2017

[The book] breaks many stereotypes. For instance, hijab clad women who are looked upon by many as passive victims of a hardline Islam might not see themselves that way at all. Babar’s research reveals that such women, more often than not, view themselves as active participants in the quest to change society.


The Telegraph, 7 July 2017

This feisty book, as echoed in the title We Are All Revolutionaries Here, is a fascinating mapping by a Pakistani woman of the journey that a generation of ‘born again’ Pakistanis have taken towards the re-constitution of a Pakistani Islamic identity that rejects the hotchpotch of western culture and Pakistani’s plural ethnic cultures to embrace a version of militant Islam that erases all other versions and problematically condones ‘fringe’ vigilante groups using violence in the name of faith. Babar’s book is an invitation to exploring the value of comparative analysis, a largely neglected research field in South Asia. Her methodology of auto-ethnography illustrates the effectiveness of incorporating of the personal in her analysis. Her creativity in innovating on research texts and her choice of the diaspora as a focus of analysis as well as a foil, demonstrates exciting approaches to doing research. Above all Babar’s book lays out a research agenda for grappling with gender, political faith and militarism in a region characterized by multiple fundamentalisms.


The Book Review, January 2018

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ISBN: 9789386062482

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