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British Asian FictionTwenty-first Century Voices$
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Sara Upstone

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780719078323

Published to Manchester Scholarship Online: July 2012

DOI: 10.7228/manchester/9780719078323.001.0001

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Suhayl Saadi

Suhayl Saadi

(p.190) 9 Suhayl Saadi
British Asian Fiction

Sara Upstone

Manchester University Press

The experience of being Muslim in Scotland is not directly comparable to being a Muslim in England. In comparison with discussions around British or English identity, there is a relative lack of commentary on racism in Scotland. Suhayl Saadi's fiction embodies a ‘Scottishness’ representative of how assumptions of a universal British Asian identity are not just problematic, but radically problematic. His texts are set in Britain, yet they clearly identify not with this broader category of the nation-state, but rather with Britain's constituent nations. Adding Scottish identity to the already problematic relationship between Islam and Britishness, Saadi's fiction exemplifies the diversity within British Asian cultures, and the need to define these in relation to specifics of time and place. That the notion of ‘Asian cool’ is an intensely limited one is taken up in Saadi's novel, Psychoraag. Saadi's nationalism speaks to the importance of geographical affiliation, even as it denies race as a basis for this.

Keywords:   Suhayl Saadi, Scotland, Britain, Scottishness, Islam, Britishness, identity, Psychoraag, nationalism, British Asian

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