Even though a bit late, but still a selection worth to go through is the hint from bookforum.com regarding a compiling review in the last issue of ‘The New York Review of Books‘, which goes through several titles on Islam and combines it with a selection on the headscarve and the veil’ under the title How to understand Islam‘:..
|From NYRB, How to Understand Islam: A review of Arguing the Just War in Islam by John Kelsay; Islam: Past, Present and Future by Hans Kung; Jihad in Islamic History: Doctrines and Practice by Michael Bonner; Infidel by Ayaan Hirsi Ali; and Secularism Confronts Islam by Olivier Roy. The conservatism of radicals: A review of Why the French Don’t Like Headscarves: Islam, the State and Public Space by John R. Bowen. The introduction to The Politics of the Veil by Joan Wallach Scott. The sanctification of the burka: Frequently overlooked amid heated debate, the Muslim garment’s intricate past goes a long way toward illuminating an often controversial present.||
review for ‘Veiled Reality’ below
See here also my current reading by Christina von Braun and Bettina Matthes ‘Verschleierte Wirklichkeit‘ (Veiled Reality), which attempts to develop a wider view than the commonly spread understanding of the veil in the western world. I haven’t written about this book, as I did not think an english version available yet, but the find of this pdf (which excerpts about 25 pages from the book) makes me hope that a translation is on the way or already available. The reviews so far read quite encouraging:
At no point do Christina von Braun and Bettina Mathes dispute that the oppression of women exists within Islam. Yet they make a stand against generalizations. Time and again they take a cultural phenomenon, open up the repressed history behind it, and thus unearth how East and West have been in constant interaction with one another. In this way â€œthe Islamicâ€ ceases to seem as alien as before â€“ and â€œthe westernâ€ ceases to seem as innocent. Veiled Reality is, one might say, the continuation of Edward Saidâ€™s book Orientalism by feminist means: the East, or rather the veil covering the womanâ€™s body, becomes the white canvas or screen on which the West projects its own yearnings, the lustful and the destructive alike. (quoted from the review)
.. and I myself will come back to it .. meanwhile some german review links on the book at perlentaucher.de