Subverting Religious Hegemony: A Psycho-Feminist Examination of Nuruddin Farah’s Hiding in Plain Sight
This paper examines how patriarchy is advanced through religion which in the context of this study refers to the way people connect with a supreme being and the way especially different genders relate with each other. Patriarchy is entrenched in culture and is one of the cultural aspects through which women, financially and socially weak men and children are subjected to domination by the hegemonic male. The study interrogates how those subjected to patriarchal domination are defying the dominating facets of religion in order to deconstruct the oppressive patriarchal structure. The study makes reference to Nuruddin Farah’s Hiding in Plain Sight (2014). Since the source of the conflict in this primary text takes place in Somalia where the majority of people are Muslims, the paper will specifically focus on the way hegemony is advanced through the Islamic religion. The study makes the assumption that defying the dictates of the Islamic religion doctrines is equivalent to challenging the hegemony that is exercised through Islam. Religion as a cultural aspect is inculcated in the minds of the characters from a tender age and thus, they grow up believing in and practising the doctrines of the religion. The study concludes that the desire to liberate themselves makes those subjected to patriarchal domination to challenge the existing patriarchal constructs domiciled in the religion. The arguments in the study are based on psycho-feminist criticism. Psycho-feminist ideology is employed by characters who wish to un-learn the religious doctrines inculcated in them and challenge patriarchal structures within the religion in order to liberate themselves
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