Laboring on the Margins: Muslim Women, Precarity, and Potentiality in Russia
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PublisherThe University of Arizona.
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EmbargoRelease after 12/06/2020
AbstractTitled Laboring on the Margins: Muslim Women, Precarity, and Potentiality in Russia, this dissertation explores how working-class pious Muslim women in Saint Petersburg cope with the ongoing economic crisis and political authoritarianism in today’s Russia. In order to understand the women’s responses to precarity, I examine the different forms of gendered labor they undertake to sustain themselves and their community. Based on 18 months of field research in Saint Petersburg, I demonstrate how the women run small businesses and volunteer, practice self-care and mother, struggle with health issues and invest their energies in cultivating the bonds of solidarity under a regime of austerity. Drawing from feminist literature on affect and embodiment, I advance a concept of “embracing” precarity, which allows the women not only to survive on the margins of Russian society, but also to imagine and act upon more just and inclusive worlds. This work offers a unique window into the lives of disempowered population groups in Russia, as well as into the exigencies of late capitalism, precarity, and gendered labor.
Degree ProgramGraduate College
Middle Eastern & North African Studies