Alia and Nebal (thank you Nebal for guest co-hosting!) got to talk to author Azareen Van der Vliet Oloomi about her newly released novel Savage Tongues! The novel examines gender constructs in Islam and the West, and the intersections of sexual desire and violence amidst the ongoing subjugation of the Middle East to imperialism. In the book, she argues for queer intellectual exchange and female friendship as alternative structures to oppose patriarchy, heteronormativity, and the imposed religious, racial, and ethnic homogeneity of nationalism.
In addition to talking about the novel itself, we discussed shared experiences navigating coming from a mixed background, particularly with identities that are often seen as enemies. We also talked about pinkwashing, queerness, the power of female friendships, and more. It was a pleasure to speak with Azareen, and we encourage you all to get your hands on the novel! Happy reading!