Salaam, Love : American Muslim Men on Love, Sex, and Intimacy
Muslim men are stereotyped as either oversexed Casanovas willing to die for seventy-two virgins in heaven or controlling, big-bearded husbands ready to rampage at the hint of dishonor. The truth is, there are millions of Muslim men trying to figure out the complicated terrain of love, sex, and relationships just like any other American man.
In Salaam, Love, Ayesha Mattu and Nura Maznavi provide a space for American Muslim men to speak openly about their romantic lives, offering frank, funny, and insightful glimpses into their hearts--and bedrooms. The twenty-two writers come from a broad spectrum of ethnic, racial, and religious perspectives--including orthodox, cultural, and secular Muslims--reflecting the strength and diversity of their faith community and of America.
By raising their voices to share stories of love and heartbreak, loyalty and betrayal, intimacy and insecurity, these Muslim men are leading the way for all men to recognize that being open and honest about their feelings is not only okay--it's intimately connected to their lives and critical to their happiness and well-being.
- Paperback | 248 pages
- 138 x 216 x 18mm | 327g
- 04 Feb 2014
- Beacon Press
- Boston, MA, United States
Table of contents
Umma: It Takes a Village
Soda Bottles and Zebra Skins —Sam Pierstorff 3
Mother’s Curse—Arsalan Ahmed 16
The Ride—Ramy Eletreby 21
A Grown-Ass Man—Alykhan Boolani 31
Who I Needed to Be—Yusef Ramelize 44
An Unlikely Foe—Yousef Turshani 52
A Pair of Photos—Ahmed Ali Akbar 61
Sirat: The Journey
The Other Iran–Iraq War—Ibrahim Al-Marashi 75
Just One Kiss—Maher Reham 86
AwkwardMan—Zain Omar 99
In the Unlikeliest of Places—A. Khan 107
Planet Zero—John Austin 114
How Did I End Up Here? —Arif Choudhury 124
Springtime Love—Mohamed Djellouli 133
Finding Mercy—Anthony Springer Jr. 143
Prom, InshAllah—Haroon Moghul 150
Sabr: In Sickness and in Health
The Promise—Alan Howard 163
Fertile Ground—Khizer Husain 169
On Guard—Stephen Leeper 179
Our Way Lies Together—Dan I. Oversaw 190
Echoes—Mohammed Samir Shamma 198
Becoming Family—Randy Nasson 212
About the Editors 237
--Omid Safi, author of Memories of Muhammad: Why the Prophet Matters
"This diverse and humane anthology documents what heartbreak and hilarity goes down (often in silence) in the American-Muslim community. It should also confuse government agents."
--Ali Eteraz, author of Children of Dust: A Portrait of a Muslim as a Young Man
"Intimate and compelling, Salaam, Love is a glimpse of the emotional balancing act American Muslim men face as they navigate the demands of faith, family and their own hearts. A must-read."
--G. Willow Wilson, author of Alif the Unseen
"Salaam, Love is an important book because it sheds light on a subject that is unknown and scary to many Americans: Muslim men and their relationship to love, sex, and intimacy. It's a book that shows how similar we all are, how much we have in common, when there's so much hate-based propaganda floating around about how different we all are. But beyond being an important book, it's also a great read. Funny, sad, cool, hot, counterintuitive, and perhaps most importantly, sexy."
--David Henry Sterry, author of Chicken: Self-Portrait of a Young Man for Rent
"While many of the tales end in marriage, none ignore the flaws and difficulties presented by romantic relationships. Throughout, there are men who lost love, lost themselves and found things they weren't looking for, as well as those still searching. Whether read all together or in single doses, faith and love abound, and there is no shortage of entertainment. In the introduction, the editors write, 'There's nothing like a good love story to connect us to one another and also help satisfy our curiosity about the lives of others.' This collection proves the honesty in that assertion." --Kirkus Reviews
"Simultaneously lighthearted entertainment and an important addition to public discourse around the place of Islam in America.... Indeed, the entire collection seeks to offer as much variety as possible, with stories reflecting a broad range of sexuality, ethnicity, religiosity, and romantic success. In this way, it pushes back against common cultural stereotypes of both Muslims and men, showing Muslims with a full range of ordinary American life experiences and showing men with tender and heartfelt emotions that they articulate beautifully. For insiders to the community, this work will prompt joyful recognition as well as thoughtful exploration of different experiences; for outsiders, it will counter one-dimensional negative images about American Muslims. For everyone it will be an insightful, thoroughly charming read." --Publishers Weekly
About Ayesha Mattu
Nura Maznavi is a civil rights attorney, writer, and Fulbright scholar. She lives in Chicago.