We Have Always Been Here


We Have Always Been Here is an autobiography and a tale of self-discovery (and about searching for a safe space to do so.) The author starts her story with the recounting of her time growing up in Pakistan. She writes about everday issues, about the role of women in society, and about concealing one’s religious identity (Samra’s family belonged to the persecuted Ahmadiyya movement.)

When the family decides to flee to Canada, Samra must face new issues: racism and poverty. What’s more, being forced to live so far from home makes her relatives feel strongly about upkeeping traditions. That’s why they decide to marry her off to her older cousin, which she finds out at the age of 13. When, a few years later, the family insists on a religious wedding, Samra feels like her world is falling apart. Since her relatives’ expectations are contrary to the freedom which living in Canada means, Samra decides to run away from home, not seeing any other possibility. She then spends several years on her journey to self-discovery and exploring her secxuality, while at the same time never resigning from practicing her religion.

We Have Always Been Here can be read as simply a memoir and a personal story, but for me, this book shows more: how easily and eagerly we judge whole groups of people, be it queer idividuals or muslims. Samra Habib makes us realise how difficult it is to exist in a society that expects you to be someone else than you are, different from common expectations. She also emphasizes that in the fight against discrimination, representation is vital.

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The lowest price ( 2023-09-22 ): 59,00  Categories: , Tags: ,

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