The New York Times best-selling author of Infidel, Nomad, and Heretic analyzes how waves of Islamic immigration are ushering in massive cultural changes and transforming sexual politics in Western Europe.
Ayaan Hirsi Ali has been speaking against Islamic extremism and sexual violence for decades. In the age of #MeToo, she asks, why is no one talking about the explosion of sexual violence in Europe’s cities? As Islamic extremism spreads to the West thanks to the millions of migrants from the Middle East and Africa, it’s women who are going to suffer. But Western feminists have focused their outrage elsewhere.
Ali knows the pain of sexual violence firsthand. Growing up in Somalia, she suffered female genital mutilation under the country’s oppressive regime. Eventually fleeing to the Netherlands, she thought she was free and safe from the cruelty of her childhood. But with new waves of extremist Islamist migration, she has begun to see the sexist culture of her homeland taking hold in the West. She argues that institutional blindness to these issues is responsible for a populist backlash which comes no closer to addressing the problem.
In Prey, Ali analyzes these the regressive gender politics inherent in Islamic extremism. She explains the systemic causes of sexual violence in the Muslim world, from the barring of women from public life, to lack of legal and cultural bulwarks against sexual abuse, to the commodification of young girls and the sexual frustration caused by modesty culture. She then takes on the issue of immigration, exposing the ways Europe is failing to successfully integrate refugees, and offers solutions for reforming its broken immigration system that can bring change.
If we don’t force immigrants to conform to Western norms on gender, she writes, the call to ban Muslims from Western countries will only grow louder.
Ali has faced death threats and harassment for daring to speak out. But she refuses to be silenced. In Prey, she argues as only she can that speaking truth to power will continue the essential century-long march of progress on women’s rights.