In defence of bookstagram

Such an important post to describe the diversity of the bookstagram community. Plus, I was mentioned in this article as well! 😉

The Lit Books

Debasing and ridiculing bookstagram has been a fashionable trend lately, as fashionable as some vogues the authors of  some despicable articles criticize. It hurts to give publicity to those articles but if you’re a bookstagrammer, you may want to read this and this pages. I feel, though, that I need to copy and paste this sentence from The Guardian, that, yes, is meant to show how intellectually superior we think we are: “When did novels become cool? When they stopped being popular. It’s a signifier of sensitivity and intellectual achievement to read a novel, remember, when you could be playing with your phone or watching Netflix.

Wheeeeeere to start? I’m puzzled to see that among all the trends, tendencies and niches on Instagram, those authors chose to launch an attack on us, passionate readers. That they chose to debase and mock a hobby that, indeed, celebrates reading…

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Editor’s Letter: Mental Health

Beyond The Hijab

by Diana Rahim

It’s hard being a person. Nobody truly tells you this, nor are we really encouraged to look into this fact deeply. As a society, we are uncomfortable with confronting sadness and despair, and would rather concentrate on a superficial, easy-to-understand pursuit of happiness. We are taught to meet our basic material needs, to obsess over our educational and career paths, and to succeed in our society. Far less emphasis is placed on meeting our very important psychological and emotional needs, and in fostering the kind of habits that are emotionally healthy not just for us, but in our reactions to others as well. Very often, even basic emotional responses and sensitivity is stigmatized. Just think of common, dismissive phrases one often hears – “Don’t be so sensitive,” “You’re being oversensitive,” “Why can’t you take a joke?”

In truth, I truly believe that to see someone express emotion…

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Bosnia: A linguistic reflection

3 years ago, I travelled to Bosnia by myself.

I took an 8 hour bus ride from Kotor, travelling through the North of Montenegro and the mountains of Eastern Europe to get to Sarajevo. As we got to Bosnia, the linguistic landscape of my surroundings changed. It became multilingual – yet, all these languages looked similar..

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When religion becomes a dealbreaker

The original version of this post was submitted in congruence to Beyond The Hijab‘s blog series on the theme of: marriage. As a Malay Muslim woman, I acknowledge that although my freedom to marry a person of any ethnicity does not come with discrimination, our community has not however been able to accept the idea of an inter-religious marriage. We cannot seem to envision a home filled with love, care and mutual respect in an inter-religious/intra-faith household. So I wrote an essay about this, tapping on my own personal experience(s). 

Sadly, the catalyst for me to write this essay was based on my experience on the opposite side of the coin. Where I was coerced and manipulated to performing rituals in order to maintain and save my relationship with my previous partner. As the relationship drew to a close, it made me reflect on my time as the bully.

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