Date of Award

Spring 5-15-2015

Author's School

Sam Fox School of Design & Visual Arts

Author's Department/Program

Art (Sculpture)

Degree Name

Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA)


Ritual externalizes religious belief through physical embodiment and codified performance that allows it to be shared through a community. In a post 9/11 American society where Muslims are subject to increased scrutiny,. In a secular society that regulates religion to the private sphere so as not to conflict with the identity of the state, externalized religious identity can become problematic, especially as a Muslim living in post 9/11 United States. Ritual thenritual becomes a way to otherize a community based on shared practices. an identity under increased scrutiny. However, looking beyond the framework that the specific rules of ritual creates to the subtle information the body actually communicates through its performance reveals gestures that emerge from the accumulation of one’s experiences through what Merleau-Ponty refers to as “habitual body memory.” Gestures embedded within ritual reach back into a deeper self that the individual can understand and relate to through shared experiences constructed from a single spiritual source. My work deconstructs the ritual of prayer in order to locate gestures and habit memories that through intimacy connect beyond the specificity of ritual performance.


English (en)