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The Muslim Mythology

To read the The Muslim Mythology, click here.

The Muslim Mythology

an anthology of theatrical scenes centring the Muslim identity in India

The Muslim Mythology is a writing endeavour that spans over two and a half years, starting in 2021 with Soho Theatre, London’s Writers’ Lab and has later blossomed into a project as part of my Artistic Research at the Norwegian Theatre Academy (2022-24). 


When I was growing up, the only muslim characters that I witnessed were terrorists and rapists or terrorists that raped or the comic relief that you laughed at and not with. Do not mistake me, there were several Muslim actors in the likes of the Khans, but they always somehow found success in playing Hindu men. The hero was never muslim. The hero was never me. 


Later when I found myself in the seat of creation, be it while at university, or right after (2015 - 20). It was yet again, Hindu men, English men, Neutral men even, but never muslim men. I had lost the imagination of ever creating muslim characters. I had learnt to hate my own culture and identity because not only were positive characters absent, the only ones present were negative stereotypes that wore surma and said jaan after each sentence they uttered; none of the things that represented me, or my peers. 


This is where the seed for the idea which is The Muslim Mythology occurs. The muslim man is largely a myth in the fabric of consciousness of most Indians. We somehow cannot be normal or normalised in any way. We only exist in the form of rioters, angered, hateful, misogynistic, uncultured, uneducated, women bashers in the eyes of the regular public. As though these were the qualities that we were destined to become in some kind of prophetic justice. The aim with these texts is to create an opportunity for audiences, readers and actors to engage with material that portrays the complexities and struggles of Muslim lives without resorting to stereotypes or oversimplification. Through this project, I hope to visibilise some Muslim men and women that I have come across and at the same time, visibilise parts of myself that have been invisible, first to me and then to others. 

The Muslim Mythology; an anthology of theatrical scenes centring the Muslim identity in India.

Images from the premier of The Muslim Mythology in Fredrikstad Norway

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