The Human Bomb: Purposeful Violence by Women & Women's Agency in Terrorism
AND WOMEN’S AGENCY IN TERRORISM
Female high school students agitated in their classrooms and a few young women committed terrorist acts. Others aided male terrorists by hiding weapons, passing messages, and offering refuge to men under suspicion.
-- Findly & Haddad, 1985: 357
[D]etermining what state support for terrorism is and deciding which states qualify is an issue more political than definitional, particularly in the absence of an internationally acceptable set of criteria for what constitutes terrorism in the first place.
-- David E. Long, The Anatomy of Terrorism 1990: 109
Among the 360 gods of the Kaaba, the most powerful were goddesses. These goddesses did not have the face of rahma, the tenderness associated with the nurturing mother, for they wallowed in the bloodbaths of the sacrifices they demanded--sacrifices all the more cruel because useless. These goddesses did not succeed in bringing about the maternal miracle that they were supposed to guarantee.
-- Mernissi, Fatima. 1992: 86.
The Qur’an declares that men and women are equal in the eyes of God; man and woman were created to be equal parts of a pair (51:49).
-– Esposito, 2002: 89.
THEORETICAL CONSIDERATIONS OF SACRIFICIAL TERRORISM 3
Woman’s DECREASING participation in War 4
WOMEN IN TERRORISM (PART 1, prior to 1960’s) 6
WOMEN IN TERRORISM (PART 2, after 1960’s) 7
WOMEN IN TERRORISM (PART 3, the First Bombers) 8
SUMMATION of Women’s Centrality 10
WOMEN’S Centrality in SHARI’AH LAW 11
“Terror-ism”—as a construct, a notion, an effect, a feeling or a presumption—is always already inscribed in the discourse, praxis, assumptions, fears and/or power dynamics, surrounding it. Even though “it” is nevertheless plural, varied, represented, misunderstood. Misunderstood, in my opinion, because certainly there is due cause for terrorism to exist, namely the presumption that terrorism is a response to an oppressive state regime/apparatus already existent as an antecedent to terrorism itself, as resistance to the regime (Oliverio, 1997). But, to top that off, terrorism is always coupled with notions of culture, custom, difference, opposition, and often with notions of faith, religion, good-will, and resistance. So, in short, when I, or this class, read a phrase like “terror and the veil” we are already reading volumes of assumptions, volumes of pre-understood beliefs, and volumes of propositions that aim to be convincing to us as we read them. This paper, then, in a very short space, aims to frame and express the subtle play of words which, for all intents and purposes, discuss, reveal, and conceal the realities around terror relative to women as active agents. The singular context around which I want to locate my discussion of non-Islamic Terrorism, or “Terrorism in the West”(Timmerman) aims to show that religious, political, and strategic terrorism is NOT ONLY a creation of the west (Laclau, 1990: 244-5), but a viewpoint often manufactured in the west and subsequently imposed on the Middle East, which, in effect and my opinion, has daunting implications on women. This paper aims to do so from a self-reflexive, western, theoretical, and feminist perspective, and will thus use some feminist theory and cross-cultural feminist writing. The singular context around which I want to locate my discussion is women’s suicide-terrorism, including of “blowing oneself up”(Timmerman) and the daunting implications that has by, for, and on women. In effect then, this paper addresses a question brought up in the very course description of our course: the role of women relative to religion and politics, and how women resist the very modes accorded to them in times of political, personal, and radical resistance. The effect of this paper should be the realization of two divergent discourses: the first discourse denigrating women’s involvement in (terrorist) activism from a traditionalist, domesticating, maternalist perspective and the second discourse celebrating, factualizing, and documenting women’s active and personal involvement in terrorism. I should like to support the latter discourse, as will be evident throughout the paper. While I can’t represent these discourses adequately in such a short essay I will give you a feeling for the interplay between them in order to emphasize women’s very real agency in terrorism. And lastly, as West aptly says, “Gender-neutral terms (such as "challengers," "dissidents," "beneficiaries," "adherents," "demonstrators," "rebels," "terrorists," and so on) mask information about who is involved—men, women or both”(West, 1990: 7), where in this case, for the purposes of this essay, I will exclusively discuss women.
THEORETICAL CONSIDERATIONS OF SACRIFICIAL TERRORISM
It is foolish to assume that the west is a discrete geographic, ideological, or cultural space. It is, for the sake of this paper, necessary to argue that the west is not discrete or dissociated from the rest of the world, in that it includes members or nearly all nationalities on the globe. The “west” is, in effect, the apotheosis of European, Jewish, Middle-East, Eastern, and Russian physical, ideological, and cultural emigration. So, on that note, it is necessary to posit that the west is central to the development of Terror as the common media choose NOT to portray, since they discourage the discovery that the discourse on Terror-ism is a Western phenomenon and invention. It is also foolish to assume that women are ONLY victim OF terror, in that they often participate IN the coercive apparatus of terrorism for collective purposes seen as beneficial to them, in either a resistance of government in general or in resistance to other groups, or, in the least, as active agents within the complex apparatus of Terrorism. But I feel that this agency is always inscribed in a self-inflicting violence that relegates agency into a passive submissiveness to a cause, to politics, to the utility of a life serving a political aim: the immediate violence done by woman to herself is her sacrifice of herself. Paul Butler, in his “Terrorism and Utilitarianism” puts it aptly: “For the suicide terrorist, death is the most certain cost. The Western (and especially the American) emphasis on individuality—the primacy of self—makes it difficult for us to understand how any cause, especially a "political" one, could be worth losing one's life. There are, however, those whose faith in their cause makes them willing to die for it (Butler, 2002). However, it is foolish to presume that Islamic doctrine, or Christian doctrine, or Judaic doctrine exclusively include and inscribe the individual into such sacrificial, or martyred constructs, or that either of them has exclusive claim on individual self-sacrifice, since all such faiths and belief systems are transnational, multi-contexed, layered, varied, or as Jalal aptly puts, “context where Islam has been the religion of a geographically dispersed, linguistically diverse and culturally diffuse minority”(Jalal, 80) cannot be denied. And, by way of segway to the next paragraph, the variety of their political participation cannot be denied also. This context-specific reading goes contrary to “most research on terrorism” which, of recent, “provides sweeping individual-oriented conclusions, generalizations, and reductionist historical chronologies”(in Oliverio, 1997—see, for example, Ascher, 1986; Laqueur, 1977; Wilkinson, 1986, 1990)—which is why these will not be cited in this essay.
Woman’s DECREASING (?) participation in War
We learned in class that, during the time of the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh), “women took an active part in the life of the community, including its battles”(Holt, 2002) and war "was one activity in which women of pre-Islamic and early Islamic Arabia participated fully. They were present on the battlefield principally to tend the wounded and to encourage the men, often with songs and poetry. A number of women became famous for their poems inciting warriors to fight fiercely, lamenting death or defeat, or celebrating victory. Some women also fought”(Ahmed, Leila, 1992: 69-70). Holt goes on to draw the paradox between today and the 7th Century, when she says: “As Islam spread and became established and its survival was no longer at risk, women were increasingly restricted in their movements; they were excluded from warfare and even some of their Islamic rights and freedoms were curtailed. This treatment of women inevitably affected their ability to contribute towards the national liberation struggles of the 20th century”(Holt, 2002). [LOST DATA HERE] To start, I will present recent examples of women’s involvement in some of the most pivotal western movements, in order to draw the lens towards further examples later in the paper. I hope the reader will be patient throughout. In an encyclopedia of women’s involvement in war or resistance efforts, Christine Fauré draws stunning parallels in the political involvement that led to early development of the French revolutionary efforts in Europe and beyond, when she says that “in effect, nothing could be more real, more concrete, than women's participation in the protest movements that marked the beginning of the French Revolution…[where] Archival records confirm the existence of 56 women's clubs between 1789 and 1793”(Fauré, 2003: 71-5). She states bluntly, “Asserting that the female mind had a “natural bent for political affairs,” some women rose up against the political interdiction that had fallen upon them(Fauré, 2003: 71). Or, further, in the mid-19th Century, Vera Zasulich can serve as an example “of the founders of…Marxism in the 1880’s, while in exile”(Fauré, 2003: 252), or Vera Figner who “studied medicine in Zurich in the early 1870s and had come within a few semesters of earning her degree when she decided to abandon her studies and join the populist movement…[then] in 1879 she joined its terrorist wing” (Fauré, 2003: 253). In the next few paragraphs I will set out the genealogy of women’s involvement in not only violence, terrorism, and martyrdom primarily because I want to somewhat contest the contention that women’s involvement decreased over the last millennium, but particularly from the standpoint that good exceptions can be found to such a contention. I will speak of this century in particular because, as it seems evident in a lot of literature, women under Islam are represented—by western media in particular—as less involved than throughout the previous fourteen centuries, and, hence, serve a good exemplar to contest. My next paragraph shall furnish similar examples from the Muslim world.
WOMEN IN TERRORISM (PART 1, prior to 1960’s)
In spite of seeming equality under the Qur’an, women in contemporary Muslim societies are nevertheless having to push for social agency and social participation. Holt, in her exposé of the constraints of women’s participation in war, says: “According to the Qur'an, men and women are equal in terms of religious obligations. Their relationship is meant to be "one of equality, mutuality, and cordiality"(16), and in society, they have been allotted different but equally important roles. Problems arise in translating the Qur'an's broad ideals into practice”(Holt, 2002). We have learned in class that, while the Qur’an “provides what appears to be an admirable blueprint for a more egalitarian society, it has encountered difficulties in changing entrenched attitudes and patterns of behavior,” thus suggesting a difference b/w “ the words of the Qur'an, [and 2,] the conventions and codified laws which emerged in the first few centuries of Islam, [and of 3,] the recent phenomenon, usually referred to as Islamic "resurgence" or "fundamentalism"(Holt, 2002). Nevertheless, it is evident that women’s participation in socio-economic revolutions and political struggles was on the rise—contrary to media opinion—when we read of the Egyptian revolution of 1919 or of the Algerian war for national liberation in the 1950s and 1960s, where “women were involved in a variety of ways: they worked as nurses and fighters; they planted bombs and also carried messages, money and weapons”(Bouatta, 1994: 19), even though they were drastically underrepresented in the population at large, and only “accounted for 16.5 percent of the Algerian population in the 1962 census”(Fauré, 2003: 459). Further also, “In 1991, for instance, when a Western-led coalition attacked Iraq, women and men poured on to the streets in states as far apart as Morocco and Pakistan, to protest against this new form of colonial aggression against the Muslim world”(Holt, 2002). Suggesting that women’s twentieth-century political involvement is (or should be) unquestioned. The gesture of suicide terrorism could make the reader posit or question if women are not again getting “shafted,” but I want to resist that position—a position that denies their agency and choice—since it is all too traditional for a man to conclude that women are passive subjects to the violence and effects of war.
I will briefly summarize this dominant stance so that I don’t make the error of repeating it elsewhere in the paper: Whereas there are good reasons to assert that, historically, “as one looks back over Muslim women's historical involvement in warfare, one particular female role stands out: woman as victim”(Holt, 2002). Instead, I aim to posit that “recently women’s roles have escalated”(Patkin, 2004) and that there certainly are narratives that don’t posit women as victims. I contest the notion of victim, because “women who join terrorist groups tend to be older and better educated than their male counterparts”(Patkin, 2004). Similarly, “many of the educated women…participate[d] in revolutionary and even terrorist activities”(Haddad, 1985: 357). I will thus describe woman’s agency in terrorism further below, to further furnish examples for this agency contrary to popular assertions otherwise.
WOMEN IN TERRORISM (PART 2, after 1960’s)
I will draw examples of women’s involvement in suicide bombings among other terrorist activities. I will do so in light of the following statement: “There have been intrepid women warriors, including Boadicea, queen of the Iceni in first-century Britain; the Trung sisters of thirteenth-century Vietnam; Marie Deschamps at the barricades in the 1830 French revolution; and the female guerillas of Chinas First Revolutionary War (1927-1928). What is more, the techniques of twentieth-century terrorism do not put women at a serious physical disadvantage”(Kramarae, 2000: 1230, Emphasis mine). More recently, a writer by the name of Yoram Schweitzer has drawn out a remarkable genealogy of women’s historic participation in terrorism, concluding that “female involvement in historical terrorist or revolutionary uprisings…[are evident in] the suicide bombings carried out by the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam in Sri Lanka and the Kurdish Warriors’ Party PKK…[where] in some cases, women accounted for as many as 66% of the suicide bombings completed”(Stern, 2003, cited in Patkin 2004). Other writers, such as West & Blumberg, in their extensive genealogy of women’s roles in social protest, further point out the vast global presence of Woman-centered Terrorism, across borders—Afghanistan, Bengal, Cuba, Colombia, England, Uruguay, Nicaragua, El Salvador, Palestine, Pakistan, etc.—“a chronology of women's participation (from  to the present) and because historical conditions affecting women's participation in each nation were sufficiently varied”(West, 1990: 190) as is evident in that short list of countries. So, as a preamble, woman’s terrorism doesn’t exist in one place, even though I may be giving examples from a few regions, I certainly don’t want to posit that these regions are exclusive and that alternative/additional examples (for longer essays) cannot be added. I will thus continue my genealogy. I find that in the 1960’s not only have “women…been involved since the beginning of the struggle between the Israelis and the Palestinians…” but that “one woman hijacked a plane, [and] others have successfully planted bombs in various locations”(Patkin, 2004). The FBI has itself realized that “there is increasing evidence that women in terrorist organizations are moving away form the traditional ‘support’ role”(FBI Warns of Female Terror Recruits, 2003; Lewis, 2003). From the mid-60’s “nearly 4,000 acts of terrorism were cited as occurring in the United States alone”(Oliverio, 1997). In 2002, after “Yasser Arafat gave his ‘army or roses’ speech in which he called up women to join as equals I the struggle against Israel, coining the term shaheeda, the feminine of the Arabic word for martyr…[what followed] that same afternoon [was namely] Wafa Idris [a Palestinian woman, who] became the first female Palestinian suicide bomber”(Emphasis Mine, Reynolds, 2002; Tierney, 2002; cited in Patkin, 2004). From that point forward, the “active recruit[ment] of women as suicide bombers” ensued.
WOMEN IN TERRORISM (PART 3, the First Bombers)
For the benefit of the reader I should like to list the first few suicide bombers, so as to emphasize the strength of their roles in terrorism—and to emphasize women’s presence in activism in general—as such. Following Idris (above paragraph), and representing the second documented woman activist in the context, was Dareen Abu Aysheh, age 21, who was a student, and "an independent minded scholar and a feminist who planned to become a university professor of English literature"(Patkin, 2004). The third, Ayat Akhras, age 18, who is still the "youngest female suicide bomber to date, "was known for her intense interest in political matters"(Patkin, 2004); and the fourth, Andaleeb Takafka, age 20, whose "latent motives have been identified as apolitical..., [but] viewed martyrdom as a road to celebrity"(Patkin, 2004). The fifth, Hlba Daraghmah, age 19, "was a student of English literature who showed the world her unveiled face for the first time on the Islamic Jihad poster and video released after hear death...and began wearing traditional dress after being raped by an uncle at the age of fourteen"(Patkin, 2004). The sixth, age 29, "was an attorney who may be been motivated by revenge for the killer of her younger brother and cousin by Israeli forces in the raid on Jenin"(Patkin, 2004). And lastly, the seventh was Reem Salih al-Rayasha, age 21, who "was a university student from a wealthy family who was said to love her two children dearly"(Patkin, 2004). It goes without saying that out of the first seven suicide bombers listed above, who are also the first seven documented women terrorists of this nature, five out of these were either University students, graduates, or professionals, amounting to an astounding percentage of 72%. That number further suggests that such involvement was a result of reasoned effort to effect change in their world and that "women have already made a long ideological journey before they set foot in the door of the terrorist organization"(Patkin, 2004). This student/graduate presence in the Terrorist groups resulted in "recruitment of young people in [and from] school[s], camps and through pervasive cultural support"(Patkin, 2004). So not only is women’s presence evident, not only are they making educated decisions, not only are they making decisions as professionals, but these decisions step from the political, academic, and person disenchantment with the (particular) state (or other) apparatus they are actively resisting. (The emphases in the quotes above are mine).
SUMMATION of Women’s Centrality
Evidently not only is the resistance located in personal-come-political resistance, or located within the academy, in the legal profession by professionals, in the trans-cultural study of western literature, but is located in the pivotal position signifying, perhaps circuitously, their central location in activism. Evidently the networking of women’s groups and individuals is not only present in the history-books but is also acknowledged by mass media: “groups such as: WITCH (Women's International Terrorist Conspiracy from Hell, a group created in New York in 1968, which developed in various American cities such as Washington, Chicago, San Francisco, and Boston, as well as on the campuses of several universities); Bitch and the group Weiberrat (Meddler's Council) in Frankfurt [Germany]; the Redstockings (a play on “bluestocking”), a New York group whose name was later taken up by Danish feminists; the Chimeras; the Gouines Rouges (Red Dykes) in France, and so on” (Fauré, 2003: 424) posit transnational social exemplars of groups many of which are still active today. Reaching the closure of this paper, I am reminded of the time in history/herstory when French philosophers—among Danish (Kierkegaard), African (Ken Saro-Wiwa), East Indian or Iranian, namely Salman Rushdie or Taslima Nasrin, and other writers, et al.—“such as Rousseau and Voltaire, for example, were defined as robbers, assassins, bandits, treasonous, mentally disordered, and, of course, terrorists, for inspiring feelings of discontent among the masses”(Oliverio, 1997). Similarly, often those formerly regarded as the opposition, as the terrorists, and so on, are regarded as saviours, liberators, educators:
George Washington is remembered as a revolutionary hero for illegally challenging, defeating, and purging the English state. Yet, Gerry Adams, leader of Sinn Fein, a party related to the Irish Republican Army (IRA), is viewed as a terrorist by the United States for similar actions. Less than a decade ago, Yasir Arafat was defined as a terrorist par excellence. Today, he is viewed as a man of peace and condemns "terrorist" action. Examples such as these which utilize terrorist rhetoric differently are common and obvious. (Oliverio, 1997; Emphases mine)
WOMEN’S Centrality in SHARI’AH LAW
I should like to trace the paradoxical discourse not only of the western doctrines, but also of Middle-Eastern contexts, to show the contrary relations between dominant readings/interpretations and the volition and power which resistance and refusal can garner for its benefit. I will shortly speak about the Shari-ah. The Shari’ah is the body of Islamic law that was developed by religious scholars (Ulama’s) after the death of the Prophet Muhammad. It was initially meant to provide moral and legal guidance to Muslims, and is based on the Koran and the Sunna (the recorded traditions or customs of the Prophet). The Qur’an has about 80 verses concerning legal issues, “many of which refer to the role of women in society and to important family issues, such as marriage, divorce, and inheritance”(Coleman, 2006: 1). Because neither the Qur’an nor the Sunna cover most day-to-day issues, however, after the death of the Prophet the ulama created other means for addressing them. As a last measure, qualified legal scholars could study a question, apply independent reasoning (ijtihad), and issue a nonbinding fatwa. Since the 11th century, “traditionalists imposed their own conservative positions on mainstream Islamic jurisprudence, and these have remained largely frozen for almost a millennium.”(Coleman, 2006:1). In spite of the fact that “prior to the twentieth century, the Qur’an, its hadiths (traditional stories of the Prophet), and Islamic law were interpreted by men in these patriarchal societies,” and also in spite of the fact that “these interpretations reflect this [patriachal] environment…” and in spite of the fact that “women were not actively engaged in interpreting the Qur’an, hadith, or Islamic law until the twentieth century…” it is now argued that Qur’anic verses favoring men need reinterpretation “in light of the new social, cultural, and economic realities of the twentieth and twenty-first centuries”(Esposito, 2002: 90). One such context of re-interpretation I have attempted in this essay is women’s actual role in political involvement on national and transnational levels. Paradoxically, those who have often remained outside of political roles, namely women, are nevertheless recurrently re-read, re-discovered, re-asserted, and thus re-inscribed in the public arena of resistance, activism, and radical social involvement. If such a strong narrative of involvement can be evident, it is left only to the imagination and to scholarly inquiry to ascertain how far greater women’s involvement in activism has been, currently is, and shall be in the grand future.
I trust that the relation between representation of women’s roles in resistance, activism, and terror-ism is not only evident but is contrary to popular representation thereof. The lacking and/or unconvincing nature of conventional arguments relative to women’s political role(s) almost beg for the inquiries into further areas of mis-representation, mis-documentation, and mis-conception. This paper is merely one example of a pieced-together genealogy of women’s radical activism and resistance in the context of relatively main-stream events in the past, contexts which are nevertheless mis-represented. I trust that I have adequately represented the stronger discourse which, evidently, celebrates, legitimizes, and documents women’s active and personal involvement in terrorism, or social activism in general—as I set out to do in my thesis. It is enticing to consider the possibilities of inverting other dominant discourses of more particular or more specific historical events, so as to uncover, posit, and document women’s involvement, presence, agency which has and is, to this day, and for some time still, unacknowledged. There is work to be done…
MUST READ (1) Fatema Mernissi (Morocco); Riffat Hassan (Pakistan);
Ahmed, Leila. (1992). Women and Gender in Islam: Historical Roots of a Modern Debate. New Haven and London: Yale University Press.
Coleman, Isobel. (2006). Women, Islam, and the New Iraq. In “From Foreign Affairs, January/February 2006”. Online Excerpts, retrieved Marth 10, 2006, from: (http://www.foreignaffairs.org/20060101faessay85104/isobel-co...)
Baker, R. W. (2003). Screening Islam: Terrorism, American Jihad and the New Islamists. Arab Studies Quarterly (ASQ), 25(1-2), 33+. Retrieved March 10, 2006, from Questia database: http://www.questia.com/PM.qst?a=o&d=5002027650
Bouatta, Cherifa. (1994). "Feminine militancy: Moudjahidates during and after the Algerian war", in Moghadam, Valentine M, editor, Gender and' National Identity: Women and Politics in Muslim Society, published for the United Nations University World Institute for Development Economics Research, London: Zed Books.
Burns, J.F. (2003, October 7). Bomber Left Her Family With a Smile and a Life. The New York Times, p. A13.
Butler, P. (2002). Foreword: Terrorism and Utilitarianism Lessons from, and for, Criminal Law. Journal of Criminal Law and Criminology, 93(1), 1+. Retrieved March 12, 2006, from Questia database: http://www.questia.com/PM.qst?a=o&d=5001976441
Caiazza, A. (2001). Why Gender Matters in Understanding September 11: Women, Militarism, and Violence. Washington, D.C.: Institute for Women's Policy Research.
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Copeland, L. (2002, April 27). Female Suicide Bombers: The New Factor in Mideast's Deadly Equation. Washington Post: C01.
Cunningham, K.J. (2003). Cross-Regional Trends in Female Terrorism. Studies in Conflict & Terrorism 26:171-195.
El-Haddad, L. (2004, January 23). A Palestinian mother becomes a human bomb. Retrieved 7/8/04 from http://english.aljazeera.net/NR/exeres/ 554FAF3A-B267-427A-B9EC-54881BDE0A2E.htm
Ellis, D. (2000). Women of the Afghan War. Westport, CT: Praeger Publishers.
Esposito, J. L. (2002). What Everyone Needs to Know about Islam. New York: Oxford University Press.
Esposito, J.L. (2002). Unholy War: Terror in the Name of Islam. New York: Oxford University Press.
Fauré, C. (Ed.). (2003). Political and Historical Encyclopedia of Women. New York: Routledge.
FBI Warns of Female Terror Recruits. (2003, April 1). www.girlswithguns.org/news/news0005.htm
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Marcus, I. (2002, March 12). Encouraging Women Terrorists. Palestinian Media Watch Bulletin. Retrieved 6/29/04 from www.science.co.il/Arab-lsraeli-conflict/Articles/Marcus-2002...
Marcus, I. (2003, October 9). Promoting Women Terrorists. Palestinian Media Watch Bulletin. Retrieved 6/29/04 from www.israel-wat.com/idris_eng2.htm
Merari, A. (1990). The readiness to kill and die: Suicidal terrorism in the Middle East. In W. Reich (Ed.), Origins of Terrorism: Psychologies, ideologies, theologies, states of mind (pp. 192-207). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Oliverio, A. (1997). The State of Injustice: The Politics of Terrorism and the Production of Order. International Journal of Comparative Sociology, 38(1-2), 48+.
Patkin, T. T. (2004). Explosive Baggage: Female Palestinian Suicide Bombers and the Rhetoric of Emotion. Women and Language, 27(2), 79+. Retrieved March 22, 2006, from Questia database: http://www.questia.com/PM.qst?a=o&d=5009287169
Risinger, F. C. (2001). Teaching about Terrorism, Islam and Tolerance with the Internet. Social Education, 65(7), 426+. Retrieved March 10, 2006, from Questia database: http://www.questia.com/PM.qst?a=o&d=5000922279
Rouquet, F. (2003). Women in Vichy France. In Political and Historical Encyclopedia of Women, Fauré, C. (Ed.) (pp. 383-396). New York: Routledge.
Schafer, D. (2002, May/June). Islam and Terrorism: A Humanist View. The Humanist, 62, 16+. Retrieved March 10, 2006, from Questia database: http://www.questia.com/PM.qst?a=o&d=5002469366
Stern, J. (2003). Terror in the Name of God: Why Religious Militants Kill. New York: Harper Collins.
Timmerman, K. R. (2002, November 26). Top Egyptian Cleric Justifies Terrorism: One View of Islam Is That It Is Forever a Religion of Peace That Values Human Life. Egypt's Grand Mufti Sets the Record Straight in an Interview with Insight. Insight on the News, 18, 33+. Retrieved March 10, 2006, from Questia database: http://www.questia.com/PM.qst?a=o&d=5000665014
Weiner, L. (2004). Islam and Women: Choosing to Veil and Other Paradoxes. Policy Review, (127), 49+.
West, G. & Blumberg, R. L. (Eds.). (1990). Women and Social Protest. New York: Oxford University Press.
Whittaker, D. J. (2004). Terrorists and Terrorism in the Contemporary World. New York: Routledge.
 “Maintaining the production of the past as a monolith is becoming increasingly difficult in a society where multiple and, oftentimes, conflicting versions of the past exist simultaneously in place and space. And, while these larger struggles provide an index of hegemonic crisis in the United States, terrorism once again is pictured as the real crisis, the ostensible real threat to the stability of the nation-state, the real enemy of national peace and security….[where] At present, in the United States, most texts discussing or explaining the nature of terrorism consider it to be a fixed, uniform phenomenon.”(Oliverio, 1997).
 On the note of education, in general, particularly in light of Canadian standards: “Canada's Muslim immigrants are of very diverse origins (Indian, African, Middle Eastern, Turkish), and the community is marked by a high level of education. Among male Muslim immigrants in Canada, 26 percent hold university degrees, in comparison to 13.8 percent of other immigrants. Muslim women tend to have less education than the men, but more of them have had some university training than other immigrant women (12 percent and 8 percent, respectively).
 “…[labeled as one of] the great criminal[s] of the century, Salman Rushdie, [who was condemned from his home,] is a writer of fiction who draws from his imagination…[in that] all the words that have to do with freedom of thought, creation, and improvisation are condemned and stamped with a prohibition”(Mernissi, 1992: 91).
 Referred to as the “female Salman Rushdie”(Alam, 1998: 431).