Sociedad Editorial Mare Nostrum Ltda.®

Manuel Rodríguez Norte 24
Santiago, Chile
Tel..: (56-2)-695 5725
Fax: (56-2)-
696 6357








16 x 21




October, 2005



Subject Matter:

Research Journalism and Gender.


The book, which makes reference to the social, political and religious role of women within the diverse cultural milieu covered by Islamic tradition, is presented today, 1st of November, at Santiago’s 25th International Book Fair. 

Islam is an endless source of myths, most of which have, in the course of centuries, been built from previous ones, under the close scrutiny of the western world. Even more unknown is the role women have had in the Arab world. The book “Daughters of Islam”, a work of both research journalism and academic research, counters most of the stereotypes that the west associates to the notion of Islam. Fanatics, reactionaries, terrorists are the stigmas from the past that today echo with greater force in reference to this ideology, allowing for innumerable crimes committed by our “civilized world” along the centuries to be forgotten. 

            In this book the author Fabiola Samhan takes a deeper look at the unknown, as for example are religious feeling and the Koran or Muslim feminism and its socio-political influence in historic happening. From feminine genital mutilation as a practice that still survives in some parts of Africa or the need for the veil or burka as a way to externalize religious belief, to the radical forms of suicidal terrorism. These are some of the aspects of reality that exist under the endless cultural diversity that besets Islamic societies, whose frontiers go into the deepest corners of Asia, Africa, Oceania and even the west itself.  

This research work lays out a political analysis based on the work by the Palestinian intellectual Edward Said and his theory of Orientalism, which purports how the western world has built its hegemony throughout the centuries, based on the disregard and disentitlement of others.  An excluding ideology, the need for an ever present enemy, antagonists for sure, have generated a coaxed ignorance requiring common denominators, malleable models and an array of discursive weapons which allow the “orientalization” of the orient. 

The book forces one to disregard preconceived ideas, inviting us to wonder across the commotion of the feminine gender, always in the shadow of history but seldom part of books. We are invited to meet those women who, inside Islam, are as much leaders, feminists and fighters as those who struggle for their freedom outside religious beliefs.     

The launching of this work, based on research journalism which has been awarded prizes by the Professional Journalists Organization and Mare Nostrum Publishing Company, will be carried out in Santiago’s 25th International Book Fair, today the 1st of November (at the Mapocho Station Cultural Center). Taking part will be the acclaimed literary critic Faride Zerán and Eugenio Chahuán, Director of the Center for Arabic Studies at the University of Chile. 

Net Public Sale Price:   $7.563.- Net + VAT = US$15,00 Net price


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