8 Nov, 2019

Wholesale PPR ELBOW Manufacturers novelist Tabish

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  Poet and Wholesale PPR ELBOW Manufacturers novelist Tabish Khair’s latest book, The New Xenophobia, decodes how capitalism is linked to xenophobia in context of the recent economic and refugee crisis in Europe. He analyses the fear of the "stranger" in historical and socio-economic context. He argues that this exaggerated fear and hatred of the "stranger" results in their curtailment and even elimination at times.The New Xenophobia explains how xenophobia is linked to power and capitalism and what makes contemporary xenophobia "new". While old xenophobia is "monstrous and quickly identifiable", new xenophobia — seen in the context of power and capitalism — is less visible. He also examines the three "isms"— racism, nationalism and Nazism — that are commonly associated with outbreaks of xenophobia. Khair’s book Muslim Modernities analysed the 9/11 attacks on the World Trade Centre, the Iraq war, Danish Prophet cartoon controversy objectively and his novel How to Fight Islamist Terror from the Missionary Position focused on how Muslims are perceived and judged and how one kind of Muslim judges another. The New Xenophobia offers a fresh perspective on the rise of ethnic, cultural, and religious politics in today’s age of globalisation.

  Excerpts from the interviewIsn’t xenophobia natural, since it’s a version of fear Fear is natural, but xenophobia is not just fear. It is an exaggerated and excessive fear. Just as it might be natural to fear snakes — though one could argue that one should be able to distinguish between poisonous and non-poisonous snakes, etc. — but ophiophobia is an exaggerated and abnormal fear of snakes. Ophiophobics might not just fear snakes but also anything that resembles snakes, like a rope. By definition, a phobia is not just a natural fear, but an exaggerated and abnormal one. Moreover, as I illustrate in my book, human society consists of strangers; strangers are not always feared. But xenophobia constructs some groups as particular types of strangers who should be feared and hated. This has to do with power, an unfair bid at power. Sometimes groups that were "friends" once are constructed as detestable strangers to be feared, hated and eliminated. This is a very complex matter, not just a natural fear, because human social consciousness is a very complex matter.

  I illustrate in the book that xenophobes create a façade of natural fear, which is misleading, to hide their bid for power. You argue that "xenophobia is a rational matter", but don’t you think that this fear or discrimination of "the stranger" is an emotional response What I meant is that many critiques of xenophobia see it as an emotional reaction. But xenophobic sentiments are often reasoned out too. So xenophobia, like any other complex human response, contains both what we call emotion and reason. Moreover, I argue in the book that finally xenophobia is not a matter of either emotion or reason only; it is a matter of structures of power. Xenophobia is evoked to empower the in-group over the out-group, partly because the real structures of fear, oppression and confusion are not addressed. We see a rope and we shout snake and strike it. Or, as happened during Nazi times, we construct a people (say, "Jews") using the image of dangerous, sneaky snakes — and we strike at the people. That is xenophobia.You write that "new xenophobia" is mainly restricted to Europe.