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New Desires, New SelvesSex, Love, and Piety among Turkish Youth$
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Gul Ozyegin

Print publication date: 1937

Print ISBN-13: 9780814762349

Published to NYU Press Scholarship Online: May 2016

DOI: 10.18574/nyu/9780814762349.001.0001

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New Pious Female Selves

New Pious Female Selves

The Feminist “Vein” Within and the Troubling Gender Divide

Chapter:
(p.167) 3 New Pious Female Selves
Source:
New Desires, New Selves
Author(s):

Gul Ozyegin

Publisher:
NYU Press
DOI:10.18574/nyu/9780814762349.003.0004

Contesting the boundary between private religiosity and public secularism in Turkey, the women whose accounts make up this chapter seek to develop identities that are consciously Muslim, public, educated, and cosmopolitan. Although the majority of the women were raised in secularly Muslim households where female family members were not religiously covered, all have adopted the Islamic headscarf as means of constructing and communicating their piousness. Subject to a ban in schools and public offices, the headscarf emerges as a salient symbol in this chapter - both of the women's renunciation of their parents' acquiescence to state secularism and of their attempts to publicly challenge the stereotype of devout Muslims as uneducated and backwards. Preoccupations with love and romance form a critical dimension of these women's self-making. Because the enactment of love must lead to marriage, these women see falling in love as a threat to the continuation of their elite education. Yet paradoxically, because in Islam women achieve full subjecthood only through marriage and motherhood, finding a suitable partner - one who is consciously Muslim, open-minded, and with whom passionate love can be shared - centrally occupies these women's projects of becoming a new type of devout Muslim

Keywords:   Islamic headscarf, Private religiosity, Public secularism, State secularism, Devout muslim, Subjecthood, Consciously Muslim

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