‘Forget about them’: The invisible and fashionable Muslim women of Sex and the City | Intellect Skip to content
Volume 3, Issue 1-2
  • ISSN: 2040-4417
  • E-ISSN: 2040-4425


The critically acclaimed television series Sex and the City aired for six seasons between 1998 and 2004. The programme, however, has been criticized for its promotion of heteronormativity and lack of racial diversity, a criticism that was maintained for the sequel to the first film, Sex and the City 2, in which the four main characters take a trip to the United Arab Emirates, was panned by critics for its Orientalism. In a scene towards the end of the film, the Muslim women save the American women from religious Muslim men in the marketplace. In this sequence, the Muslim women bring the American women into a room where they unveil themselves to reveal Louis Vuitton designer clothing under their abayas. Following this scene, the American characters wear abayas in order to escape. This scene corresponds to Mikhail Bakhtin’s ‘carnivalesque’, in which traditional conventions are reversed and the characters behave outside their normative framework. However, I argue that in this context, such a masquerade fails to accomplish a reversal because of the underlying dominant colonialist power structures.


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  • Article Type: Article
Keyword(s): carnivalesque; Muslim women; Sex and the City 2; unveiling; veiling
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