Sexagon: Muslims, France and the Sexualization of National Culture

Sexagon: Muslims, France and the Sexualization of National Culture

Sexagon: Muslims, France and the Sexualization of National Culture

Sexagon: Muslims, France and the Sexualization of National Culture

Synopsis

Since the earliest times the people of Europe have gathered together, either as families or as whole communities, to celebrate their traditional festivals - their high days and holidays, their harvests, their births, weddings and funerals. At Christmas and New Year and Easter, and at the pagan festivals that preceded them, people ate the dishes sanctified by custom for those occasions. The best local produce was served at these feasts but often with the extra savor of the unfamiliar: exotic spices in cold northern countries, fish from icy Atlantic waters in the sunny south.Ritual and ceremony, some of it very ancient, accompanied the food. From all over Europe from Scotland to the Mediterranean, from Hungary to Cornwall, Elisabeth Luard has collected descriptions of these traditional feasts and festivals, many of which she has experienced first hand, and hundreds of recipes for the dishes appropriate to them. As well as being a unique and wonderfully readable cookery book, European Festival Food is written with the scrupulous attention to detail and authenticity that is the hallmark of Elisabeth Luard's cookery writing, the recipes are peppered with hundreds of fascinating anecdotes and little known facts about local history and folklore.Starting with December the book is organized according to the months of the year and so it importantly also reminds us of the cycle of seasonality that is now once again regarded as the natural and much more enjoyable way to shop and eat. Elisabeth Luard is an award-winning food-writer and a winner of the much coveted Glenfiddich Trophy. In the judges' estimation, 'in addition to scooping the much coveted Glenfiddich Trophy, Elisabeth Luard was named best Cookery Writer for her recipes in The Oldie. Elisabeth's seemingly effortless style of writing, self-drawn illustrations and understanding of the way in which ordinary people's cooking reflects their history, culture and everyday life, makes her one of the most individual and distinctive food writers of all time.' In the 90s she covered regional cooking in Britain for Country Living and was the food-columnist of The Scotsman and The Telegraph. She is the food columnist for The Oldie and a contributing editor to Waitrose Food Illustrated as well as many national newspapers.

Excerpt

Among the sensitive questions involving Muslims living in the West, and in
Europe most singularly, there is the position of Islam on homosexuality. In
certain contexts, this question would be the sole and unique key to the possible
“integration” of Muslims in Western culture. As if European cultures and values
could be reduced to the acceptance or rejection of homosexuality
.

Tariq ramadan

Sexagon explores the broad politicization of sexuality in public debates about immigration and diversity in France and traces said politicization in French discourses and cultural productions in an attempt to challenge common perceptions that Muslims maintain unmodern attitudes about sexuality. Specifically, the book focuses on examples from literature, film, psychoanalysis, ethnopsychiatry, and pornography, as well as feminist, gay, and lesbian activist rhetoric to examine where sexualized representations of communities of immigrant origin take a political turn. the book also examines the rhetoric of French establishment figures who have expressed their frustrations with the changing demographics in their “familiar” France by questioning the “Frenchness” of Arab and Muslim minorities born in France—not because of linguistic or civic barriers, but because of perceived conservative attitudes about gender and sexuality. This frustration, I argue, gravitates around the concept of virilism—that is, a mixture of toughness, hardness, unruliness, assertiveness, and sometimes aggression which is projected onto male and female immigrants and their offspring. in the eyes of many French observers and commentators, virilism not only animates the “difficult” Arab, black, and Muslim boys featured in sensationalized newscasts, it also defines their neighborhoods in the suburbs or banlieues, their religion of Islam, and the notion of immigration itself. This virilization of the Arab other naturally requires a feminization, and in some cases an androgenization, of the host country: France, which has been called the hexagon (because it has six distinct sides), increasingly has come to resemble what I term a sexagon, because . . .

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