Speaking Muslim Subaltern through the Ethical Agent in Shakespeare and the Holy Quran

Document Type : Original Article


1 Ph.D. Student of English Literature, Faculty of Humanity and Science, Science and Research Branch, Islamic Azad University, Tehran, Iran

2 Professor of English Literature, Shahid Beheshti University, Tehran, Iran



William Shakespeare, the English bard of Avon, inaugurates a Feminist approach in Love’s labour’s Lost which is comparable with the Holy Quran’s mandate and Hadith. He reminisces Muslim association through deeply-seated words of the Elizabethan era including Ethiop, black, moors, Africans and so on in order to signify in his work the Islamic concern for the Muslim women in terms of respect, love, and revival of rights. Riffat Hassan’s theology of honor killing and progressive Islam could be argued to be in thematic affinity with Gayatri Spivak’s concepts of ethical responsibility of the agents and subalterns. The area of concern in Shakespeare’s encompasses men’s sanction in shunning women, intellectual men vs. slave, black and inferior women, and love, marriage and infatuation with women. This is in line with Quranic principles namely poor Muslim lifestyle vs. the affluent pagan hegemony, Muslim’s faith, migration to from Ommat, reception by the hegemonic pagans, Muslims’ conquests and Islamic enhancement. The area of concern in Shakespeare’s play includes men’s sanction in shunning women, intellectual men versus the black and inferior women, love, marriage, and infatuation with women. This approach is in line with the life style of the poor Muslims as opposed to the affluent pagan hegemony, and includes faith, migration, and toleration for the sake of Muslims’ conquests.


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