Mohja Kahf

Mohja Kahf



Mohja Kahf (born 1967, Damascus, Syria) is an Arab-American poet and author.

Kahf moved to the United States in 1971. Her family has been involved in Syrian opposition politics, a theme reflected in the life of her character Khadra of The Girl in the Tangerine Scarf.

She received her Ph.D. in comparative literature from Rutgers University and is currently an associate professor of comparative literature and faculty member of the King Fahd Center for Middle East and Islamic Studies at the University of Arkansas, Fayetteville.
Literary career

Kahf's work explores themes of cultural dissonance and overlap between Muslim-American and other communities, both religious and secular. Islam, morality, modesty, gender and gender-relations, sexuality, pol
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Average rating: 3.89 · 2,046 ratings · 363 reviews · 10 distinct worksSimilar authors
The Girl in the Tangerine S...

3.72 avg rating — 1,180 ratings — published 2006 — 3 editions
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E-mails from Scheherazad

4.27 avg rating — 191 ratings — published 2003 — 2 editions
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Western Representations of ...

4.37 avg rating — 19 ratings — published 1999 — 5 editions
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Hagar Poems

4.14 avg rating — 14 ratings3 editions
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E-mail da Shahrazad

really liked it 4.00 avg rating — 1 rating
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Radical Hope: Letters of Lo...

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4.06 avg rating — 596 ratings — published 2017 — 7 editions
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Dinarzad's Children: An Ant...

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4.03 avg rating — 58 ratings — published 2004 — 2 editions
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Annunciation: Sixteen Conte...

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4.50 avg rating — 6 ratings
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Inclined to Speak: An Antho...

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4.37 avg rating — 38 ratings — published 2008 — 2 editions
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iCOVER: A Day in the Life o...

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4.29 avg rating — 7 ratings — published 2010 — 2 editions
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“All women speak two languages:

the language of men

and the language of silent suffering.

Some women speak a third,

the language of queens.”
Mohja Kahf, E-mails from Scheherazad

“I'm not defending their views. I'm defending their right to have their views. There's a difference.”
Mohja Kahf, The Girl in the Tangerine Scarf

“Generally speaking, Americans cussed, smoke, and drank, and the Shamys had it on good authority that a fair number of them used drugs. Americans dated and fornicated and committed adultery. They had broken families and lots of divorces. Americans were not generous or hospitable like Uncle Abdulla and Aunt Fatma; they invited people to their houses only a few at a times, and didn't even let them bring their children, and only fed them little tiny portions of food they called courses on big empty plates they called good china. Plus, Americans ate out wastefully often...

Americans believed the individual was more important than the family, and money was more important than anything. Khadra's dad said Americans threw out their sons and daughters when they turned eighteen unless they could pay rent--to their own parents! And, at the other end, they threw their parents into nursing homes when they got old. This, although they took slavish care of mere dogs. All in all, Americans led shallow, wasteful, materialistic lives.”
Mohja Kahf, The Girl in the Tangerine Scarf

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