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Gould, Punishing Violent Thoughts: Islamic Dissent and Thoreauvian Disobedience in post-9/11 America
Author(s):Rebecca Ruth Gould Date:2018 Subject(s):Henry David Thoreau, Islam, Literature of terrorism, Political philosophy, Prison literature, Violence Item Type:Article Permanent URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.17613/M66Z92 Abstract:American Muslims increasingly negotiate their relation to a government that is suspicious of Islam, yet which recognizes them as rights-bearing citizens, within a culture they claim as their own. To better understand how the post-9/11 state is reshaping American Islam, I examine the case of Muslim American dissident Tarek Mehanna, sentenced to seventeen years in prison in 2012 for providing material support for terrorism. I read Mehanna's verbal and visual depictions of his persecution in relation to the American dissidents Mehanna claims as intellectual predecessors, above all Henry David Thoreau and John Brown, while situating this dissent within a long history of American activism.