Facebook as Embodiment of Social Relations and Piety among American Muslim Women

Author(s) Ashley Hahn
Contact Ashley Hahn, Florida International University, 11200 SW 8th Street, Miami, FL 33199, USA. Email: ashley4hahn@gmail.com
Issue CyberOrient, Vol. 15, Iss. 2, 2021, pp. 5-42
Published December 20, 2021
Type Article
Abstract Based on a three-year-long ethnographic research on a group of young Turkish–American Muslim women, affiliated with a faith-based social movement, I explored why these young women turned to Facebook to maintain their religious sisterhood after their graduation from high school and how their media choice and use of Facebook contribute to their Muslim subject formation. Drawing from literature on ethics and morality and employing a discourse-centered approach to language and culture provide me with frameworks and tools that help to move beyond the homogenizing and prescriptive concepts like “media niche” and “networked ore digital religion” in this study. Through these frameworks, I demonstrated that their media choice and use is more about their ethical becoming as Muslim subjects rather than solely being about medium itself or performing religious identities. Besides, their moral project, that is becoming better Muslims, rely not only on religious codes and norms but also on everyday social norms and values. This study particularly demonstrates how new practices of mediation become part of existing and old ethical debates and therefore is important in shedding light on the media choices of individuals.
Keywords Facebook, friendship, morality, ethics, media choice, Muslim subjectivities