Artist: Laila al-Othman|
Confronting Bodies: Islamist group in Kuwait
Date of Action: 1978 to 1984, and 2000
Specific Location: Lebanon, Kuwait
Description of Artwork: Laila al-Othmanﾒs book ﾓThe Departureﾔ in which she uses words such as "lustful" in describing the relationship between one sea wave and another. According to al-Othman, she had not intended this language to have a sexual connotation.
Artist: various authors censored|
Confronting Bodies: The Islamic Research Center at Al-Azhar University
Date of Action: 1997
Specific Location: Egypt
Description of Artwork: 196 books written by various authors
Artist: Mohammed Alvi of Ahmedabad - Urdu writer, poet and Sahitya Akademi award winner|
Confronting Bodies: Mufti Shabbir Siddiqi of Ahamdabad
Date of Action: April 4, 1995
Specific Location: India
Description of Artwork: The piece of work under question is a poem by Mohammed Alviﾒs in which he writes, "Agar tujh ko fursat nahin to na aa, Magar ek achcha nabi bhej de Qayamat ke din kho na jaye kahin Yes achchi ghadi hai abhi bhej de. (O God, if you are too busy to visit us, send us a good angel to guide us; and send him now instead of on the Day of Judgment).ﾔ
Artist: Iranian writer, poet, scholar and journalist Ali Akbar Saiidi Sirjani|
Confronting Bodies: Iranian Government, specifically the Iranian Ministry of Security and Intelligence
Date of Action: 1994
Specific Location: Tehran, Iran
Description of Artwork: In his various writings Saiidi Sirjani - a Iranian scholar, historian, author and political activist - criticized the government Iran and was outspokenly against Islamic fundamentalists.
Artist: Naguib Mahfouz (pictured above): Egyptian novelist, recipient of the 1988 Nobel Prize for Literature.|
Confronting Bodies: Young Islamic extremists in Cairo
Date of Action: October 1994
Specific Location: Cairo, Egypt
Description of Artwork: Naguib Mahfouz, an Egyptian writer, won the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1988. "Chitchat on the Nile" (1971) is one of his most popular novels. It was later made into a film featuring a cast of top actors during the time of president Anwar al-Sadat. The film/story criticizes the decadence of Egyptian society during the Gamal Abdel Nasser era. It was banned by Sadat to prevent provocation of Egyptians who still loved former president Nasser. Mahfouz's prose is characterized by the blunt expression of his ideas. He has written works covering a broad range of topics, including socialism, homosexuality, and God. Writing about some of the subjects was prohibited in Egypt.
Artist: Taslima Nasreen, a Bangladeshi poet, writer, columnist and doctor (pictured above)|
Confronting Bodies: Bangladeshi Islamic Fundamentalists
Date of Action: 1990-present
Specific Location: Bangladesh
Description of Artwork: Bangladeshi poet, writer, columnist and doctor Taslima Nasreen took on writing about women's oppression. In her poetry and newspaper columns she criticizes religion, traditions, and the oppressive cultures and customs that discriminate against women. According to Taslima, the religious scriptures are out of time, out of place. Instead of religious laws, she maintains, what is needed is a uniform civil code that accords women equality and justice.
Artist: Manouchehr Karimzadeh|
Confronting Bodies: the Government of the Islamic Republic of Iran
Date of Action: April 1992
Specific Location: Iran
Description of Artwork: Manouchehr Karimzadeh is a cartoonist for the scientific revue "Faradﾔ. In 1992 he illustrated a piece for an article that criticized the state sport in Iran. The illustration was of a soccer player who slightly resembles the political leader of the 1979 Islamic Revolution of Iran, Ayatollah Khomeini.
Artist: the Algerian playwright and stage director Abdelkader Alloula|
Confronting Bodies: Islamic Front for Armed Jihad (FIDA)
Date of Action: March 10, 1994
Specific Location: Oran, Algeria
Description of Artwork: Abdelkader Alloula was a Algerian playwright and stage director. He was born in Ghazaouet in western Algeria, and studied drama in France. He joined the Algerian National Theatre upon its creation in 1963 following independence. His works, typically in vernacular Algerian Arabic, included: El-A￢leg ("The Leech"), a satire of corrupt administration; Homq Salim ("Salim's Madness"), a monologue based on Nikolai Gogol's Diary of a Madman; Hammam Rabbi ("God's Bath"), based on Gogol's The Inspector General.
Artist: The Algerian writer and poet Youssef Sebti|
Confronting Bodies: Islamist activists in Algeria
Date of Action: 1993
Specific Location: el-Harrach, a suburb in Algeria
Description of Artwork: Youssef Sebti was a sociologist and bilingual writer. He was the author of several collections of poetry and published cultural chronicles, in particular in the weekly magazine ﾓAlgeria Topicalityﾔ and was an outspoken critic of Islamic extremists. In Sebtiﾒs writings he argued that totalitarianism under any guise, religious or military, is the ultimate evil.
Artist: Algerian poet, fiction writer, journalist, and editor Faher Djaout (1954-1993)|
Confronting Bodies: The Armed Islamic Group [of Algeria]
Date of Action: 1993
Specific Location: Algeria
Description of Artwork: Faher Djaout was a writer and editor of Ruptures magazine. He was also a fiction writer and poet. Djaout was an avid proponent of secularism which asserts the freedom of religion, and freedom from religion, within a state that is neutral on matters of belief, and gives no state privileges or subsidies to religions; and his writings often promote this belief in secularism.
Artist: The Saudi Arabian poet Sadiq Melallah|
Confronting Bodies: Saudi Arabia government and the state authorities of Qatif
Date of Action: September 2, 1991
Specific Location: Qatif, Saudi Arabia
Description of Artwork: Sadiq Melallah's poetry which speaks out against and questions the accepted social and religious practices in Saudi Arabia.
Artist: Farag Fodda|
Confronting Bodies: Islamic Fundamentalists from the group Al-Gamma'ah Al-Islamiya
Date of Action: June 8, 1992
Specific Location: Ciaro, Egypt
Description of Artwork: Farag Foda, a secularist Egyptian writer, thinker, journalist and human rights defender, was outspokenly critical of Islamic fundamentalism in Egypt. In many newspaper columns, he demonstrated weak points in Islamic ideology. Foda's book "To Be or Not to Be" was banned in 1990 on the grounds that it offended religion. And, a week before his murder, Foda had been branded as an apostate by Al-Azhar, the government-supported religious establishment.
Artist: Nonfiction, sex education books by Robie Harris and Jeremy Daldry|
Confronting Bodies: Laurie Taylor, a mother of three children in the Arkansas public school system, and, the School Board of Arkansas
Date of Action: 2005-2006
Specific Location: Fayetteville, Arkansas USA
Description of Artwork: "It's So Amazing" and "It's Perfectly Normal" by Robie Harris and "The Teenage Guy's Survival Guide" by Jeremy Daldry are nonfiction educational books that deal with human sexuality and reproduction with text and illustrations designed to be humorous and nonjudgmental.
Artist: Katie Rubright, editor-in-chief of 3rdfloor magazine|
Confronting Bodies: United States government, specifically the International Revenue Service (IRS)
Date of Action: 2004-2006
Specific Location: New York City, USA
Description of Artwork: 3rdfloor magazine is a quarterly radical arts magazine Katie Rubright started in Baltimore and then brought to New York City. The first issue in February 2005 included a collage piece of a Native American Madonna smoking a cigarette, a depiction of George W. Bush with crosses on his shoulders and skulls behind him, and a plastic sculpture of the Virgin Mary dripping with blood from a shotgun wound.
Artist: A critic of abstinence-only education that was censored from speaking at a national conference on the prevention of sexually transmitted diseases. And, proponents of contraception and comprehensive sex education.|
Confronting Bodies: the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, US Rep. Mark Souder (R-Ind.)
Date of Action: May 2006
Specific Location: USA
Description of Artwork: A national conference on the prevention of sexually transmitted diseases.