Wajahat Ali’s Domestic Crusaders is a poignant look into the life of an American Muslim family in post-9/11 America. We recognize our own families and family members in these characters, but also realize that they are archetypes in Muslim American communities. At the same time, these characters also have their own quirks, and enjoyed the depth of them all, especially the female characters. Each character has their own viewpoint even as they embody larger movements or personality types that we easily recognize.
I was especially impressed with the fact that Ali has rounded each of these characters nicely. Especially Fatima and Khulsoom—Fatima can easily become another faceless hejabi crusader, but Ali takes us behind all her slogans. And Khulsoom doesn’t really fit into the “backward” box at all, despite Fatima’s pseudo-feminist accusations to the contrary.
If you’re in New York City, check it out! It opens on September 11th at The Nuyorican Poets Cafe; you can find out all the opening info here.