From: The Chronicle [mailto:daily@...
Sent: Monday, September 30, 2002 5:00 AM
To: Chronicle Daily Report
Subject: 9/30/2002 Daily Report from The Chronicle of Higher Education
ACADEME TODAY: The Chronicle of Higher Education's
Daily Report for subscribers
Here are news bulletins from The Chronicle of Higher Education
for Monday, September 30.
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MAGAZINES & JOURNALS
A glance at the September issue of "American Anthropologist":
Do Afghan women need rescuing?
Lila Abu-Lughod, a professor of anthropology at Columbia
University, offers several caveats to the Bush administration's
"war on terrorism" as it applies to the purported "rescue" of
Muslim women oppressed by the former Taliban regime.
The war, which "justifies itself by purporting to liberate, or
save, Afghan ... 'women of cover' (as President George Bush so
marvelously called them)," is a problematic approach informed by
dubious motives, Ms. Abu-Lughod writes. "Can we only free Afghan
women to be like us, or might we have to recognize that even
after 'liberation' from the Taliban, they might want different
things than we would want for them? What do we do about that?"
she asks. "Second," she warns, "we need to be vigilant about the
rhetoric of saving people because of what it implies about our
Instead of trumpeting such paternalistic notions of salvation,
Ms. Abu-Lughod writes, a better first step would be "to break
with the language of alien cultures, whether to understand or
eliminate them. Missionary work and colonial feminism belong in
"Our task," she concludes, "is to critically explore what we
might do to help create a world in which those poor Afghan
women, for whom 'the hearts of those in the civilized world
break,' can have safety and decent lives."
The article is not available online, but information about the
journal may be found at http://www.aaanet.org/aa
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