Poetic homeplaces

The article Poetic homesplaces can now be read in the Swedish Journal of Gender Studies. The article is about a group of Muslim women in Sweden who write poetry. Based on conversations with the poets as well as readings of their work, I highlight how, in recent years, various spoken word platforms have been significant for a younger generation of Muslim women, especially from the suburbs, in order to formulate and express their subjectivity.

These plattforms can be understood as a kind of poetic homeplaces. The concept of homeplaces was originally coined by bell hooks to highlight the importance of environments where marginalized minority groups come together in a safe space. The original reference is made to one’s own family and community. However, the poetic homeplaces discussed in this article go beyond family, ethnicity, religion and age.

Here, the focus is instead about playing with language in order to chisel out what kind of poetry you want to write and what stories you want to tell. Mixing language and religious expression. Writing and understanding one’s migration heritage. Highlighting missing stories. To do away with colonial traditions such as skin bleaching. Through poetry and conversation both irl and online, the poets sometimes come together to share their poetry and also reflect on what can or cannot be shared.