Nomad: From Islam to America: A Personal Journey Through the Clash of Civilizations

by Lisa Kirchner

This deeply personal story of feminist activist and political leader Ayaan Hirsi Ali is part family history and part thesis on the impact of Islam on women. The result is a must-read memoir more enlightening than many books assigned in liberal-arts classes.

A follow-up to her influential best-seller Infidel, this is the story of a family ruined by adherence to the Quran in a literal sense. Born in Somalia and erratically transplanted around Africa, Ali is forced to flee every place she settles. Growing up, the only constant in her life is her family’s uncompromising attachment to Islam; with only blind faith as a guide, each of Ali’s family members conflicted views toward sexuality, money, and violence lead to suffering, from mental illness to murder. When her father arranges her marriage, Ali decides to escape and seek political asylum in the Netherlands. There, she becomes a member of Parliament–until a political crisis leads to the stripping of her citizenship. Then she again seeks refuge, this time in the United States. Nomad explains why she chose America and how she successfully adapted in ways the rest of her family could not.

Every culture has dysfunctional families, but Ali illustrates why Islam’s culture of shame is a true threat. Thankfully, she offers remedies to the situation. Ultimately, her inspiring journey becomes a call to action for Western feminists to share in her courage and clarity and reach out to their Islamic sisters.

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Founded in 1993, BUST is the inclusive feminist lifestyle trailblazer offering a unique mix of humor, female-focused entertainment, uncensored personal stories, and candid reporting that tells the truth about women’s lives.

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