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Authors: Lucy Windridge-Floris and Shaamil Windridge-Floris


This duo-autoethnography explores responses to a recurring hiatus in conversations when I, a white English woman, state that I am married to a man with an Arabic name. Together, my husband and I have used practices of creative writing for therapeutic purposes to examine our personal encounters with Islamophobia in the UK. This article evidences the power of co-inquiry, demonstrates the necessity of flexible responses to written expressions of trauma; and reveals outrage and silence as distinctive ways of coping with discrimination. It shows an incongruence in the binary which presupposes white non-Muslim men to be superior in their ability to respect women and highlights the need to dismantle white supremacy in trustworthy environments to avoid unhelpful fight-or-flight responses. Personal responses have been written, acknowledging structures of wider political, social, and historical contexts shaping social conditions.

Author: Dr Jasna Levinger-Goy


The experience of a civil war is always traumatic, as is refugee status and settling down in a new environment. Writing about such traumatic events takes a great deal of processing and a lot of time. Almost 30 years after the events, I set out to write a memoir describing them. One surprising fact was that the language in which the book was first rendered was English. Although I have near native proficiency in English, it is not my mother tongue. It was only after the book was completed that the idea of translating/rewriting it in Serbo-Croat started to emerge.
The link between language and identity is well-known, but some aspects might seem rather strange. In this essay, I analyse various psychological processes that accompanied my writing. I note the differences in emotions and reactions, as well as something I would refer to as a change of personality traits, depending on the language I was writing in. Completing both versions of the memoir helped me process my trauma and bring together previously fragmented pieces of self.