Soumission Wow Great satire of French of European of Western values or lack thereof So well done that the irony often slips by unnoticed Who the hell are we SoumissionSo what do you call a novel about Muslims taking over control of France A novel of generally cynical politics A novel where women appear mostly in sexually explicit scenes and have little to say except in defining themselves in relation to men some exceptions A novel where 15 year old girls become acceptable as second or third child wives A novel in which the much touted French intellectual, defender of superior French culture appears to be willing to sell out in favour of the above In this case, it is called Soumission In the Islamic religion one submits to Allah In Soumission, one submits to what one believes is necessary for a happy life perhaps the same thing, but most likely cynical to a point In any event, the Christian belief in Christ, belief in European values are found wanting, no longer relevant So submission it is GR readers seem to be greatly divided on this novel Not only are there sharp divisions on ratings, but even those who agree on ratings often seem to have read different books Who should read this Those who have a strong sense of irony, a willingness to be uncomfortable with themselves and a well developed understanding of satire, for this is satire at its best, subtle but in your face at the same time A certain knowledge of French culture and current French politics would also help but can be quickly acquired as needed on line The English translation is scheduled to be out in October, 2015 Michel Houellebecq has written a book about a disaffected, lonely, somewhat cynical French university professor at Sorbonne III, Fran ois Fran ois has, many years back, written his doctoral thesis on the writings and life of Joris Karl Huysmans, a fact that is important to the novel Alcohol seems to play an exaggerated role in his life The reader is subjected to his innermost thoughts on his life, his work, French politics and his sexual activities, both alone and with others The story unfolds in the first person as the world evolves before Francois eyes So, it s 2022 and France and the world have continued to unfold on the current track Nothing much has changed as France enters its scheduled elections And the Earth moves and nothing happens The gist of the story, which you can read in detail elsewhere preferably in the book , is that France inadvertently elects a Muslim led government Plausible under Houellebecq s view of his compatriots The newly elected Muslim Brotherhood party, in coalition with the Socialists, moves slowly and intelligently under Prime Minister Mohammed Ben Abbes, a likeable and competent man, to transform France, Europe and the entire Mediterranean region into a moderate Islamic culture He is somewhat of a Constantine transforming Rome This change leaves Fran ois at somewhat of a loss in particular, he has lost his teaching position, non Muslims are not allowed to teach in publicly funded institutions, and he has lost his young Jewish girlfriend, who has moved with her family to Israel and met someone else He wanders in this new culture, at a loss but he was somewhat at a loss before the changes Houellebecq makes it clear throughout the book that French, European culture is already bankrupt Can we see the Muslim takeover as a new opportunity for a better future I do not believe that Houellebecq wants to say that Nor is he in disdain of the Muslim takeover His disdain is for his fellow French citizens who have lost all values All is not lost for Fran ois however The new administration comes calling They need him They need an expert in Huysmans on the faculty Indeed, the new administration wants to support traditional French culture for all of its respectability They have no intention of interfering with the tradition of La Belle France It is Fran ois who hesitates First, in trying to situate himself in the new France, he has gone searching for his old passion, Huysmans He has tried to follow Huysmans into the world he withdrew into a hundred years earlier when he too found himself adrift in a changing France and quickly flees back to France, questioning Huysmans commitment and sure of his own ability to suffer Christian commitment He needs stimulation, not adulation Mostly, he needs to satisfy his own sexual obsessions, normal male sexual obsessions He has returned to Paris to try to fulfill his needs and to basically give up when the offer comes to return to the Sorbonne But as with all good deals, there is a condition Of course Fran ois must become a Muslim and he cannot imagine doing so His recent experience with his Christian beliefs has left him drained of the possibility of believing in any religion And this is where Houellebecq is at his best He introduces us to Robert Rediger, a man recently promoted to be in charge of the Sorbonne but moving quickly up the ladder into the leadership of the new Muslim government He is charming, intelligent, extremely well read and Muslim He converted to Islam as a young man and comes across as sincere At the same time, Rediger is enjoying all of the benefits of his situation a grand old mansion, an overflowing library, the best of wines and a new 15 year old wife to supplement his first, middle aged, wife who quietly moves around in the background serving his every need Rediger explains his own conversion many years before, feeling unsatisfied with the values of the world in which he lived Belgium Cette Europe qui tait le sommet de la civilisation de la monde s est bel et bien suicid e, en l espace de quelques d cennies European culture was collapsing and his favourite bar in Brussels in the Hotel Metropole, noted for its Art Nouveau style was closing In contrast, he saw Islam as providing stability of tradition, unchanging in its values in its submission to Allah As the Metropole closed, he became a Muslim, a sincere Muslim He tells his story to Fran ois and then sets out to lay out why Islam has become the core of his life the concept of submission of woman to man as in the novel The Story of O Fran ois has been given a lot to think about Rediger has also given him a small book he has written on Islam it has sold millions He reads the book and on their next encounter poses some questions Questions on bigamy His main concern, as a professor, is that he does not consider himself to be a dominant male Rediger clarifies that, no, university professors are by nature dominant males But then there is the real problem of how does a man chose the right woman Here too Islam has developed the perfect solution les marieuses women whose role it is to approach young women s families on behalf of men Simply put, the process of finding a spouse, or spouses, is without stress Islam has taken care of that Worry free courting Houellebecq has been accused of being anti Islamic, but I think not Yes it is Islam that takes over France, but it is not portrayed as evil or oppressive It simply is Definitely, Houellebecq portrays it as something much benign than the Christian takeover of the Roman empire some 1 600 years ago Pagans would have gladly suffered such a fate as French citizens face here losing your job with a full pension No, not the Muslims, nor women are Houellebecq s target It is his fellow French intellectual, the complacent unthinking, European who has abandoned all semblance of cultural tradition who cannot relate to his her own roots who cannot form real human relationships that he attacks Islam isn t a bad thing It is portrayed as being a energetic, committed other which replaces the sloth of Europe A satirical warning that if values matter, the need to be upheld If not, then accept what comes One thing should be noted by those of us in the Americas We a barely thought of here I would guess that Houellebecq considers that we already have nothing to lose We are already, long have been, little than barbarians This is a novel about values and I suspect Houellebecq is in complete distain of what we have and have never had His concern is for what France has lost and continues to lose. It seems as though Houellebecq wrote the novel to stir up not debate but controversy I m afraid to say that charging a small segment of French population with so much power and influence is way too out of proportion French Muslims have no power as a bloc , have no media representation they own nothing , have no think tanks or lobbies to influence decision making in France or elsewhere in Europe.Sure, they are the largest religious minority, but the numbers are small in the total population The total percentage has not crossed into double digits anywhere in Europe, though if you were to listen to the right wing media, you d probably think that about 30% to 40% of French, British, German, Dutch, Austrian etc populations now consist of Muslims and, lo and behold, it will hardly be another decade before the dark forces of the Crescent become a majority and, theoretically, come to power This whole debate, this loud and endless lament, says about the state of Western society than it addresses problems among minority faith communities or immigration Can the West hold on to its post WWII romance of liberalism equality secularism multiculturalism LESM This is the question Houellebecq is attempting to answer but he s chosen to unload the failures of Europe in this case France on the shoulders of a powerless community whose most effective means of showing power is to blow up buildings or truck down people walking down the street, leaving the rest of their people to give out embarrassed defenses.Just imagine the despair.Global Jihadist violence and recent high profile incidents of terrorism in Europe are causing palpitations that an extremist takeover, somehow or the other, is imminent But no, what s happening in Iraq and Syria in part the responsibility of the same Western regimes who make the most noise about Islamist terrorism is not going to happen in France or anywhere in the West So please sleep well As for Houellebecq, a democratic coming to power of conservative Muslims who then go on to turn France into a theo democracy is not only far fetched but simply ludicrous.So is this satire A literary experiment to see what sort of France would there be if a conservative Muslim party came to power and changed the rules If so, I m not very amused To think up a scenario where a small minority of European Muslims would come into power through the backdoor and force everyone the liberals, the atheists, the other into submission is as questionable as, say, a writer engaging in a fantasy of the Jewish conspiracy to take over the entire world October 16 As a former Muslim, I see that Houellebecq is right on the money I escaped Egypt my country in search of a land of freedom, and yet here oppression is chasing after me in the West We love for Europe to be Europe After all, that is why we left our mother countries in search of a civilized world where human dignity is respected By the way, please take a moment to read my story of conversion into Christianity and drop me a line and I will be your friend In the book Submission Houellebecq describes in a calm, almost casual style, the fictional stories of a Paris university professor of literature, who describes his everyday life and thereby taps the social upheaval, after a Muslim party has won the elections Houellebecq tells about social developments in France, how it leads to the election success of the Muslim party and what the consequences are The whole book is written in excellent language with a lot of bad irony and subtle humor For this literature the reader has to have some advanced geographical, cultural and literary knowledge of France to understand all his allusions The novel is not suitable to seduce the reader for a few contemplative hours from the everyday life, because he literally hits the reality in the readers mind Moreover you learn a lot about Joris Karl Huysmans and about French literature, and generally about topics of the French intellectuals He calls for reflection and involvement, in society, religion and politics and to become aware of the meaning of human existence It is brilliant and humorous written and therefore it is absolutely recommended. I have never been a big Houellebecq fan finding his obsession with his own intellect and genitalia annoying, so when a friend assured me that this book, Submission from 2015, was his masterpiece and was not just a paen to his intellect, I gave it a shot Well, aside from the novel premise of an islamic conversion of France in the 2017 election and a few comical observations here and there, the book is still primarily about his own intellect and his genitalia I was bored from about page 5 and that ennui never really left me up to the end Yes, there are some interesting observations and he does know an awful lot about Huysmans, but his characters are flat and two dimensional, his female characters are either ugly read unfuckable or sexy and it follows fondly fucked by the protagonist or inaccessible because they belong to another powerful male Despite the novelty of the central theme of Islam vs modernity, Houellebecq s own view of women is utilitarian and reductive In sum, my low opinion of Houellebecq remains low and I will be far less inclined to give him another shot to change that opinion in the future. I set out to read this book expecting to be provoked because in my experience Houellebecq is always hell bent on provoking somebody, and very often that somebody is of the opposite sex I wasn t disappointed this time his narrator managed to provoke me right at the beginning, and regularly from then on, so I decided that the only way to review this book was with a full set of teeth on show But relax, my teeth are not bared , just revealed in a wide smile because the only way to take the twenty first century part of this book is with a giant dose of humour And there are some deliberately funny lines at least I hoped they were deliberate In fact, I enjoyed the book much than I thought I would and it also lead me to read a book by a nineteenth century author, J K Huysmans, a book I ve owned for a while but hadn t yet got around to reading I actually paused the Houellebecq book half way through in order to read rebours from beginning to end, and I began to better appreciate the parallels between the protagonists lives and experiences, although it isn t at all essential for readers to read the Huysmans book since Houellebecq threads plenty of material about Huysmans life and times into his twenty first century story To a certain extent, I felt Houelllebecq s narrator s engagement with Huysmans and other writers of the late nineteenth century might have suited me better in a book with less of a political theme but I can see why he combined the Huysmans part with his contemporary tale as there are some apt comparisons between the two In any case, taking a break from the modern day story to visit the nineteenth century suited me very well and I was grateful to Houellebecq for the nudge to finally open rebours edit according to the notes at the back of rebours in which Huysmans speaks of a character called Jean Folantin from one of his earlier books, A Vau l Eau, I see that Folantin, than the protagonist in rebours, is the character who closely resembles Houellebecq s narrator They are both slightly hypochondriac single men, despondent at work, obliged to eat poor food alone, and who decide eventually to go with the flow vau l eau when a new way of life presents itself.When his narrator is not contemplating the nineteenth century, Houellebecq allows him to zone in on various aspects of modern French life the political system, the university system, and especially the politics within the university system I enjoyed all that satire very much However, I generally prefer satire to be delivered with a little nuance than I found here Houellebecq dropped so many over obvious hints about the eventual outcome of his 2022 scenario that even though he held off from describing that outcome until the very last pages underlining the huge importance he gave to the story elements , we knew almost from the beginning exactly how it would end So not only a laboured plot but the labouring done at the expense of the satire, I felt There were also some very long turns by characters who appeared in the narrative just to make certain ideological points the secret service agent, Alain Tanneur, for example, who is introduced twice just to make the case for one side of the book s principal argument and the president of the Sorbonne university, Robert Rediger, who is twice brought on just to debate the other side of the argument though I enjoyed the choice of name in Rediger s case the verb rediger means to write or to write out formally and it is Rediger who gets to write out the guidelines for living comfortably in a French Muslim state the satire in this part is quite well done but not taken as far as it might have been.That was my main problem with this book, the scenario is really too mild in the end I think Houellebecq had several great ideas here and might have written something powerful But to do that, he d have had to ditch his narrator at the abandoned motorway stop in the first half of this story There I bared my teeth in spite of my good intentions Dans Une France Assez Proche De La N Tre, Un Homme S Engage Dans La Carri Re Universitaire Peu Motiv Par L Enseignement, Il S Attend Une Vie Ennuyeuse Mais Calme, Prot G E Des Grands Drames Historiques Cependant Les Forces En Jeu Dans Le Pays Ont Fissur Le Syst Me Politique Jusqu Provoquer Son Effondrement Cette Implosion Sans Soubresauts, Sans Vraie R Volution, Se D Veloppe Comme Un Mauvais R VeLe Talent De L Auteur, Sa Force Visionnaire Nous Entra Nent Sur Un Terrain Ambigu Et Glissant Son Regard Sur Notre Civilisation Vieillissante Fait Coexister Dans Ce Roman Les Intuitions Po Tiques, Les Effets Comiques, Une M Lancolie FatalisteCe Livre Est Une Saisissante Fable Politique Et Morale Would a society based on Moderate Islam be such a bad thing This seems to be the kind of book that divides critics into the two equally useless camps 1 This is islamophobic and racist garbage 2 Bravo A dark satire My view is that it s neither All Houllebecq is saying is that a completely secular society is like a vacuum Given the opportunity, it will let itself be filled If you don t want to risk it being filled with something you don t like, then you shouldn t have emptied it completely in the first place With this in mind, Houellebecq goes on to show how the polarization in French politics could pave the way for a Muslim party to get into power, and what it could mean for the French population.Returning to the question in the title would that be a bad thing Well, it turns out, not necessarily From a perspective of power, comfort and freedom, at least not for men half the population Or at least the heterosexual and educated part of it.I don t see this novel as an attack on Islam I am no expert on religion, but most of what he says about it seems to be accurate If anything, he is merely pointing out that Islam as a religion is much capable of social change due to it s hereditary element and ability to bind large amounts of people to it s cause whether it s for good or bad The sense of cultural loss and inability to feel any sort of connection to your own roots which dominates the French secular society in Soumission and perhaps also real life appears as a no less bleak situation than what Islam offers, namely a life with meaning and a clear direction The downside The return of the patriarchyJust some minor details concerning women s rightsHouellebecq is criticizing everyone and no one, really He isn t pointing fingers of laying blame He is merely pointing out that a secular society is fragile, very fragile, and that it to a certain extent has to be combined with a set of cultural values if it is to remain in place Otherwise, it will slowly erode under the pressure of other ways of life, which in this case just happens to be Islam For better or worse Better for some and worse for others, like every other society in the history of mankind Houellebecq doesn t presume to have the answer he is simply saying that it will be different, and that it might very well happen. This is a case of a novel of ideas with the best or worst possible timing The very day it was published in French was the day of the Charlie Hebdo shootings a few short weeks after the English translation came out, Paris was attacked again Our protagonist, whose name I ve already forgotten, is a professor of 19th century literature and an gormless slob who eats microwave food and hires prostitutes to lick his balls He, like many Houellebecq protagonists, moves through life with a depressed indifference That is, until the 2022 elections and the fictitious Muslim Brotherhood Party edges out the Front National He is the main character , but his life is shaped by Muhammad Ben Abbes, who is the Nietzschean bermensch to our protagonists Last Man He is charismatic, sharply intelligent, and the sort of man who makes other men surrender to him willingly In this curious way, he is the strong leadership which the far right craves, with the exception that he leads a Muslim revitalization of Europe instead of a Christian one Unemployment and crime plummet, political squabbles perish, Europe rises to challenge and equal the United States, and the nation is a unified, organic whole With the exception of the new underclass, women But our protagonist doesn t really care about them Houellebecq s dystopia is apparently not the one where the fictitious Muslim Brotherhood takes over it s the one with an anemic market liberalism which makes any takeover possible, or preferable You almost get the sense that Houellebecq would approve of any new regime even if you consider the Margaret Atwood esque fate of all the women His deep pessimism parallels his professional subject, Huysmans a move from decadent overindulgence to the comfort of belief Whether that belief is sincerely held is another matter Houllebecq s study does not cover sharia law or fundamentalism or any of the caricatures of Muslims which haunt the media or political debate It is a study of collaboration horizontale with a new regime This is the sort of person who would willingly abandon their old France, leaving behind nothing to mourn for the prospect of material gain This is apparently the sort of person who would favor any extremism, any man who would covet arranged marriages and obedient slave wives because any social movement for women is threatening They are not so poor that they d be on the edge of survival, but just well off enough to have time to be frustrated and miserable An interesting idea, but I wonder if people will discuss it for all the wrong reasons. Sex, Religion and PoliticsIf you only read one book about sex, religion and politics this year, make sure it s this one It packs enormous punch into far less than 300 pages, raising the question yet again why novels need to be 562 or 1,376 pages long and if they do on the basis of some subjective criterion, why they aren t written with such consistent verve, intelligence, wit and humour asSubmission.For all the philosophy, this novel is paced like a mass market thriller or the screenplay for a prophetic, if not quite dystopian, film Think an R ratedFahrenheit 451orSuper Cannesmeets1984orBrave New World.Actually, the plot alone would make a fantastic film In the meantime, we must be content with an outstanding satirical novel of ideas.http 08 11 2010 LesFrom Diderot to CelineIf you still want your novels to be encyclopaedic,Submissionis firmly in the Diderotian camp This time, it s no mere helmet cam trip through Asian sex tourist destinations Instead, it actively mourns the decline of the secular values of the Enlightenment, the French Republic and theEncyclop die.The first person narrators of Houellebecq s fiction are as misanthropic as anything conjured up by Louis Ferdinand C line.However, the misanthropy is arguably a natural response to developments in modern consumer society, which has secreted us inside a spiritual vacuum It seems that, literally, there is no other way for us to be.From Engagement to IsolationThe narrator, Fran ois, is an unmarried mid forties humanities professor To describe him, you have to use words like isolated, reclusive, withdrawn, unemotional, bored, abject, purposeless, unmotivated, hopeless, melancholy, uninvolved, resigned, disillusioned, deluded, disengaged, the very opposite ofengag I realised that part of my life, probably the best part, was behind me.He is close to suicide, but he can t be bothered taking the final step He figures that he has no reason to kill himself than anybody else alive On a date, he s just as likely to put on a Nick Drake album He has no future to speak of He just is Until one day, when he won t be.Yet, Fran ois is the fictional vehicle, if not exactly an anti hero, through which European civilisation realises its destiny.Tobi Vail from Bikini KillA Cock and Bull StoryThere s a massive vacuum at the centre of Fran ois being, but nothing is capable of filling it Nothing can please or pleasure him, not even promiscuous sex with his teenaged students his spiritual quest ferrets out paramours who smell like teen spirit His narcissism has led inevitably to depressionIn the end, my cock was all I had And it s of little practical use to him,since my erections were rarer and less dependable and required bodies that were firm, supple and flawless The flesh might be flaccid, but the humour is Sterne.Filling the VacuumSubmissionmight wear the garb of satire However, it still explores the causes of the vacuum as well as the forces that are intent on filling it, ostensibly for the purpose of satisfying our communal, personal and spiritual needs.A lot of the blame lies at the foot of sex , religion and politics To this extent, the novel was bound to be controversial However, Houellebecq proclaimsI will not avoid a subject because I know it is controversial He just jumps right in, head first.Strange BedfellowsIn order to explore the dimensions of the controversy, the novel projects forward to the French election in 2022 It s a brilliant literary strategy that blends realism and fantasy.The population is so divided that no one political party or ideology can command a majority in its own right Equally, the need to differentiate between like agendas blocks the scope for compromise and coalition at least, in advance of the election The Far Right National Front by itself can almost double 34% the vote of the Socialist Party and the Muslim Brotherhood or Fraternity 22% each.Despite the popular apprehension about Islam, the Left decides to form a government with the Muslim leader Muhammed Ben Abbes in the role of President and a lily livered Socialist in the role of Prime Minister.France European Parliament Election 2014 Final Resultshttp wp content uploaThe Human Face of IslamThis is no radical jihadist Islam Ben Abbes is a charming, sophisticated, cosmopolitan, multicultural, moderate Muslim He walks confidently on the international stage.He recognises that the values of the Republic have allowed him to achieve the highest position in the country Yet he remains a consummate politician and manipulator of public and private opinionThe reality is that Ben Abbes is an extremely crafty politician, the craftiest, most cunning politician France has known since Fran ois Mitterand And unlike Mitterand he has a truly historic vision The Pragmatic March from Abandon to AbandonmentNevertheless, some aspects of the Islamic agenda are non negotiable What is fascinating is Houellebecq s insight into the pragmatic process by which many secular values are readily abandoned by the public, the bureaucracy, academia and the Left, in order to deny power to the Far Right.What is jettisoned includes the separation of religion and the state, academic freedom, a public education system beyond the age of 15, and anything resembling women s rightsWhat the Muslim Brotherhood really wants is for most women to study Home Economics, once they finish junior school, then get married as soon as possible with a small minority studying art or literature first That s their vision of an ideal society Also, every teacher would have to be Muslim No exceptions The Temptation of Fran oisFran ois witnesses these changes from a privileged position in academia.Initially, he is dismissed like all other academics Later he is offered a position at three times the level of remuneration, provided he will convert to Islam Aware that he has frequently had sexual liaisons with his female students, the authorities offer to find him at least two wives, it being implicit that they could be as young as 13 It s almost enough to restore both cock and confidence assuming they re not one and the same.The dynamic of the potential conversion provides the novel s main plot device Fran ois is actually a renowned expert on Joris Karl Huysmans, a Decadent writer who wroteA Reboursand later converted from atheism to Catholicism at a similar stage of his life Thus, the conversion is something for which Fran ois has been theoretically and mentally prepar ed ing for the whole of his adult life.God Resurrected in and by AcademiaMany French make the transition to the new Islamic society with little need for adjustment in their personal lives However, the role of an academic allows Houellebecq to devise an intellectual analysis of Islam within a pre existing philosophical tradition.Houellebecq has previously been prosecuted unsuccessfully for making comments that might incite hatred against Islamall religions are stupid, but Islam is the stupidest of all. Initially, the response to the release of the book by those who hadn t read it was that it was Islamophobic and anti French However, the opposite is in fact the case In a subsequent interview, he revealed that he has now read the Koran and itturns out to be much better than I thoughtthe most obvious conclusion is that the jihadists are bad MuslimsThus, he purports to have no prejudice against Islam per se.The Occlusion of the National AffrontThe Muslim characters are highly articulate advocates for their faith who place it in the context of European civilisation, even if some of its tenets aren t compatible with the secular Republican values of liberty, equality and fraternity which arguably have failed France, well, at least its spiritual needs.The fascinating thing about the book is that these arguments are given an intelligent and potentially appealing spin You can imagine how society might one day get to the point where Muslims, despite comprising less than 20% of the population, become a social and political force that has a significant role in the mainstream certainly one that can and must be embraced by the tired remnants of the Left in preference to the Far Right National Front.Putting Man in His PlaceThe Islamic view according to Fran ois is that secular values have resulted in a rampant individualism at the expense of genuine community, fraternity and brotherhood Here s how they view secularism and its mission against GodIt wasn t enough for them to coldly deny the existence of God they had to refuse it, like Bakunin Even if God existed, it would be necessary to abolish Him They were atheists like Kirilov in The Possessed They rejected God because they wanted to put man in his place ed in the place, and instead, of God They were humanists, with lofty ideas about human liberty, human dignity Now that there was nothing but man, he was in a vacuum of his own creation.The goal of religion is to restore man to his proper place, beneath God.No Room for Sisters in the BrotherhoodIronically, the word brotherhood reflects the real significance of the changes that are implemented by the Muslim Brotherhood The people who lose the most are women They are by definition excluded from the brotherhood Their role is confined to polygamous marriage, childbirth and parenthood The most obvious change on the street is the sight of all women wearing conservative clothing and hijabs.The Submission of WomenFrom the point of view of an outsider to both religion and Islam, the major problem with the Islamic vision is its treatment of women The explanation of the Islamic attitude towards women in the novel assuming it is correctly portrayed was enlightening, at least for me.I had forgotten that the wordIslamactually meanssubmissionand hence provides both the central metaphor and the name of the novel as well as Theo van Gogh s short film.It s argued that man must submit to God Allah the Creator and his laws, but equally that woman must submit to man.Paradoxically, the role of women in the family is so paramount that they must be sheltered from the burden of work outside the family unit It becomes the role of the male to financially provide for the family It s almost as if Islam is doing women a favour by relieving them of a burden necessitated by life in a modern western economy You could even question whether a western economy, and therefore the way we currently work, is surplus to our real needs Democratic SubmissionThe question today is how could this vision be imposed on a Western society If 50% of the population are women, how could Islam be imposed peacefully on independent women as soon as 2022 The answer depends on the existing apparatus of democracy, hence the pivotal significance of the 2022 election If 10% of the population were Muslim women, then it s possible that a coalition involving an Islamic party could garner as much as 55% of the vote, assuming the rest of the vote was split equally 45% for the Right, 45% for a coalition including the Muslim Brotherhood It would be this simple to arrive at a mandate for legislating a change of the rights and obligations of women Having become law, the state would bring the full weight of the law down on women who failed to comply, quite apart from any social sanctions that might be applied.Islam and Far Right NativismThe attitude towards women reveals an anomaly at the heart of the political relationship between Far RightNativismand Islam Nativists object to the presence of foreigners in their midst Howevertheir irrational hostility to Islam blinds them to the obvious on every question that really mattered, the nativists and the Muslims were in perfect agreement When it came to rejecting atheism and humanism, or promoting the necessary submission of women, or the return of patriarchy, they were fighting exactly the same fight And today this fight, to establish a new organic phase of civilisation, could no longer be waged in the name of Christianity Christianity has been fatally compromised by its lengthy cohabitation with the secular state of liberal individualism, which once itattacked that ultimate social structure, the family, and thus the birth rate,signed its own death warrant Muslim dominance was a foregone conclusion Against the Enlightenment, Against the Grain, ReboursApart from Huysmans, much of the philosophical conjecture sounds like de Tocqueville, Gibbon and Spengler We re witnessing the decline of the West, the decline and fall of the Judaeo Christian Empire, as a result of a virus caught from secular humanism.Or perhaps, given that European civilisation has already become secular humanist, it s accurate to say that Europe s mortal wound has been self inflicted Houellebecq quotes Toynbee approvinglyCivilisations die not by murder, but by suicide In Muslim eyes, the value of Enlightenment reason has been exaggerated It s irrelevant to most of usThe totality of animals, the crushing majority of men, live without ever finding the least need for justification They live because they live, and that s all, and that s how they reason and then I suppose they die because they die, and this, in their eyes, ends the analysis An Alternative ProjectionWhile the narrative ceases within months of the election result and before we know for certain that Fran ois has converted, what is implicit in the above analysis of secular humanism is the possibility that Islam might use its coalition with the French Left to arrive at a broader, pervasive and socially conservative alliance with the Far Right National Front.Once this was achieved, secular humanism and liberalism could be extinguished altogetherSecondary and higher education could be completely privatised All of these reforms were meant to restore the centrality, the dignity, of the family as the building block of society For these Muslims, the real enemy the thing they fear and hate isn t Catholicism It s secularism It s laicism It s atheist materialism They think of Catholics as fellow believers Catholicism is a religion of the Book Catholics are one step away from converting to Islam that s the true, original Muslim vision of Christianity Religious AffiliationThe portrait of Ben Abbes is far positive than this However, this speculation is consistent with the views of some of his supporters and the analysis of Fran ois It makes sense that religions, no matter how diverse, might come together to defeat atheism and its political manifestations, especially as only they might be able to fill the spiritual vacuum that seems to be the heart of the matter.Houellebecq has said something to this effect in a recent interviewMy book describes the destruction of the philosophy handed down by the Enlightenment, which no longer makes sense to anyone, or to very few people Catholicism, by contrast, is doing rather well I would maintain that an alliance between Catholics and Muslims is possible While many see Houellebcq s fiction as misogynistic, it s conceivable that the only factor standing between today and this possible future is the resolve of women.Presumably, they will get little or no support from men like Fran ois His example is evidence that the submission of the male can be acquired for the price of the right to polygamy.PICS Pro Islamic women protest outside the Great Mosque in Paris.http actualite internaActivist protests outside the Great Mosque in Paris.FEMEN disrupt Muslim conference in France I think, then, that the species of oppression by which democratic nations are menaced is unlike anything that ever before existed in the world our contemporaries will find no prototype of it in their memories I seek in vain for an expression that will accurately convey the whole of the idea I have formed of it the old words despotism and tyranny are inappropriate the thing itself is new, and since I cannot name, I must attempt to define it.I seek to trace the novel features under which despotism may appear in the world The first thing that strikes the observation is an innumerable multitude of men, all equal and alike, incessantly endeavoring to procure the petty and paltry pleasures with which they glut their lives Each of them, living apart, is as a stranger to the fate of all the rest his children and his private friends constitute to him the whole of mankind As for the rest of his fellow citizens, he is close to them, but he does not see them he touches them, but he does not feel them he exists only in himself and for himself alone and if his kindred still remain to him, he may be said at any rate to have lost his countryAlexis de Tocqueville If Islam is not political, it is nothingAyatollah Khomeini NETGALLEY DISCLOSURE view spoiler I accessed this book free of charge for review purposes hide spoiler

Michel Houellebecq born Michel Thomas , born 26 February 1958 birth certificate or 1956 on the French island of R union, is a controversial and award winning French novelist To admirers he is a writer in the tradition of literary provocation that reaches back to the Marquis de Sade and Baudelaire to detractors he is a peddler, who writes vulgar sleazy literature to shock His works though, pa

☃ [PDF / Epub] ☂ Soumission  By Michel Houellebecq ✑ –
  • Paperback
  • 300 pages
  • Soumission
  • Michel Houellebecq
  • French
  • 12 May 2019
  • 9782081354807

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