Faculty Writing: On Racialized Metaphors of Madness, and Polyvalent Economic Thought in Islam

Writing for Mad in America, Jenny Logan implicates canonical literary representations of madness as darkness—“a black hole,” “an enveloping darkness”—as a complicating factor in poor health outcomes for Black women. Pointing to forgotten, or suppressed, or critically fabulated narratives of psychic distress written by Black women, from Marita Bonner to Saidiya Hartman, Logan argues that recovering and recentering Black stories and Black thought is crucial—to narrating the history of madness and to the future of the movement for mad liberation.  

And, writing for Maydan, Sami Al-Daghistani proposes a rethinking of Islamic economics “from the ground up.” Modern Islamic economic thought, he writes, did not evolve from classical Islamic traditions or sciences of nature; rather, “despite its Islamic characterization,” its central precepts are firmly grounded in “the epistemological and philosophical structures” of the European liberal tradition. With its original anti-materialist and anti-capitalist impulses in mind, Al-Daghistani urges “a moral refashioning and restructuring” of Islamic economic thought “as a human science based on multifold perspectives and epistemologies.” The effort to decolonize and indigenize—to affirm and engage the polyvalent traditions already present in classical Islamic economic thought—will, he argues, not only do justice to Islamic intellectual history in general but will also ground economic policy in ethical concepts.

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