Fabricating Difference - Steven W Ramey

Fabricating Difference - Steven W Ramey

6. Clashing Allegiances: The Practicality of Constructing National Identity

Fabricating Difference - Steven W Ramey

Andie Alexander [+-]
Leibniz University Hannover
Andie Alexander is a doctoral candidate in the Institute for the Study of Religion at Leibniz University Hannover. She is co-editor (with Jason W. M. Ellsworth) of Fabricating Authenticity (Equinox, 2024) and is Managing Editor of The Religious Studies Project. Her research focuses on identity construction, discourses of difference and experience, and conceptions of the individual as a way to examine how post-9/11 discourses of inclusivity and pluralism implicitly work as a form of governance and subject-making which construct and constrain the liberal Muslim subject. 


Constructing difference serves a practical role in the construction of identities. This essay explores the ways in which Islam, not only as a practice but also as an identity for Muslims, is constructed and subsequently regarded as antagonistic to a conception of an “American way of life.” In exploring how Islam is established as different and marginal in a normatively Christian America, this essay argues that these fabrications of difference are one of the ways in which the United States is attempting to construct its own national identity—one that includes certain practices while excluding others. With this approach, this essay regards “difference” not as a descriptive act but rather as a construction that is rooted in certain socio-political agendas and employed as a way to establish and maintain normative ideas of national identity in the United States.

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Alexander, Andie. 6. Clashing Allegiances: The Practicality of Constructing National Identity. Fabricating Difference. Equinox eBooks Publishing, United Kingdom. p. 69-76 Jul 2017. ISBN 9781781794876. https://www.equinoxpub.com/home/view-chapter/?id=31449. Date accessed: 25 Jun 2024 doi: 10.1558/equinox.31449. Jul 2017

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