Cut from the Same Cloth is a collection of essays by Muslim women edited by Sabeena Akhtar. In the collection are the very real and varied experiences of a handful of women in today’s world. From what makes a safe space to how racial stereotypes can be used to make Muslim women feel excluded in educational institutions, there are a range of different topics covered.
The great thing about this collection of essays is that it gives Muslim women a voice of their own. This isn’t just a quick hit piece by an ambitious journalist to grab headlines while these topics are trending on twitter. These are the voices of women who have lived through what they have wrote about. As it says in the blurb, this collection isn’t about giving answers to tired old questions that have been asked time and time again. It’s about taking back the narrative and removing the lens of white feminism that these women are all too often viewed through.
Every aspect of womanhood is explored including motherhood to living everyday life against male expectations and gender stereotypes. One of my favourite essays is “The Quest for modesty in a digital age”, by Ruqaiya Haris which explores the pressures of being a modern Muslim woman on social media and the misogyny they can face. There is also a very emotional essay on the experience of being a Muslim woman in the wake of the Grenfell tragedy.
Overall, Cut from the Same Cloth is a fantastic collection of insightful and enthralling essay that should really be on everyone’s shelves. I would recommend this if you liked We Have Always Been Here by Samra Habib or intersectional feminist text such as Feminist City: A field guide by Leslie Kern. Cut from the Same Cloth is a wonderful book that is great at shift the way you think about the world you know so well from another person’s experience.