My name for the purposes of this blog is Marwa, and I am here to write about Arab, Muslim-ish, and Muslimish (mish, Arabic for ‘not’) issues. I am an ex-Muslim, an apostate, an atheist, an escapee from the Middle East, a victim of both religious-based violence at the hands of my own family and the crushing Western war machine in my homeland.

I am a mostly-liberal seeking to oppose the confused and misinformed right-wing phobias that negatively affect my people.

I am a mostly-liberal seeking to oppose the liberal dogma that resists enabling useful critique of foreign cultures and societies for fear of being assuming, paternalistic, and hurtful.

I want to promote the idea that informed critique leads to reform and leads to solutions.

I want to write in memory, poem-bursts, in story.

I want to engage in argumentation, robust and clear and critical.

Sometimes I will speak from emotion, a depth of confusion and pain, a clarity of intimacy and love, without aspiring to an argumentative form. Sometimes I will try to find usefulness in rigor. There is no set formula.

But whatever my rhetoric, I want to highlight the human avenues of being one type of Middle Eastern woman with appreciation and sensitivity. I want to claim my culture and my country and I want to critique the ideologies and belief-systems therefrom.

I want to be corrected, challenged, acknowledged, talked to. But mostly I’m hoping that this will somehow be educational, beneficial, and always with the betterment of the people in the region at heart.

Please visit my FAQ section for my insights on some of the finer points and challenges of this project.

For an explanation of the title and images on this blog, refer to The Veil and The Images respectively.