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Thread: Ayaan Hirsi Ali

  1. #1
    Senior Member Lightyear's Avatar
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    Default Ayaan Hirsi Ali

    I first came across this woman when I read her memoir Infidel in 2008. Since she was hailed as a radical atheist and endorsed by Richard Dawkins and Co I expected her writing to be full of half-baked, anti-religious polemic (one reason why I just can't respect Dawkins, to me he is just an arrogant, angry old man) but instead found her writing to be engaging, insightful and despite her strong opinons it was obvious that she tried to be fair and base her opinions on facts.

    Her is an article about her and some excerpts from her new book Nomad:

    Ayaan Hirsi Ali: 'Why are Muslims so hypersensitive?' | World news | The Guardian

    Ayaan Hirsi Ali: Extracts from Nomad, her new book | World news | The Guardian

    Personality-wise I would say she is an INFJ or INTJ leaning more towards the latter. She is soft-spoken, intense and seems to be on a mission. She is definitely very independent-minded and a thinker but as I said what struck me about her writing was that she tried to see all sides of an issue and to be fair instead of just mowing everyone down with arrogance who doesn't agree with her. I can completely relate to her characteristic of speaking the truth even if it is unpopular but trying to do so in a civilised manner, that's what makes me think INFJ. However I am not sure if an INFJ would be THAT provocative in some of their statements so maybe she is an INTJ after all.

    I definitely got a soulmate-vibe after reading her memoir and have loads of respect for her despite us being on opposite journeys in life (I was brought up as an atheist and became a born-again Christian as a young adult while she rejected her Muslim faith and is now promoting secularism.) so that makes me think that maybe we are both fellow Ni-users.

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    The Duchess of Oddity Queen Kat's Avatar
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    I remember her from her time as a politician for the VVD (Dutch political party, liberal/rightwing, "People's Party for Freedom and Democracy"). She worked on a movie with Theo van Gogh (Submission), I believe the movie was about the suppression of women in the Islam. Anyways, Theo van Gogh got killed by a Muslim extremist and the killer left a letter to Hirsi Ali on Van Gogh's dead body. Hirsi Ali left the Netherlands after she got into a fight with a fellow party member, I believe. (Just for some further information.)

    I don't have an exact idea of what type she might be. She really does have a INxJ vibe, but I'm not sure about T or F, but I guess she's F.
    I was sitting outside the classroom waiting to go in, and I saw an airplane hit the tower. The TV was obviously on. I used to fly myself and I said, "There's one terrible pilot."
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    She is ISTJ.

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    Senior Member Lightyear's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Franz View Post
    She is ISTJ.
    Can you please explain your reasoning behind your conclusion?

    I don't see the Si in her, she was brought up in an environment that promoted very strongly adhering to family and religious values and she broke free from that and is now actively promoting the Enlightenment values of living a self-determined life, making up your own mind and being tolerant towards people you don't agree with. She has a strong Si background but she herself doesn't come across as Si to me at all, she didn't speak to her family for years because her cause of promoting secularism and making people aware of the plight of Muslim women was her priority.

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    The Duchess of Oddity Queen Kat's Avatar
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    Do Si dominants change their minds easily? I read that Ayaan had a muslim extremist teacher when she was younger, and who influenced her into becoming a muslim extremist. I believe she became an atheist later, maybe when she moved to Europe. She seemed pretty open minded, when you read this. She became practically the opposite of what she used to be, I think you have to be very open minded for that and you have to be able to change your mind easily.
    I was sitting outside the classroom waiting to go in, and I saw an airplane hit the tower. The TV was obviously on. I used to fly myself and I said, "There's one terrible pilot."
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    Senior Member Lightyear's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Saint Kat View Post
    Do Si dominants change their minds easily? I read that Ayaan had a muslim extremist teacher when she was younger, and who influenced her into becoming a muslim extremist. I believe she became an atheist later, maybe when she moved to Europe. She seemed pretty open minded, when you read this. She became practically the opposite of what she used to be, I think you have to be very open minded for that and you have to be able to change your mind easily.
    I really recommend that you read her memoir Infidel, whatever you think of her it's a great book.

    Her dad was the leader of a resistance movement against Siad Barre the Somali dictator, and as a result Ayaan, her mum and her two siblings had to move around a lot, they lived in Somalia, Saudi Arabia, Ethopia and Kenya.

    When she was a young woman her dad arranged a marriage for her to a man whom (if I remember that right) she hadn't even met and with whom she was supposed to live in Toronto. On her way to Canada she stopped over in Germany and in her eyes the only way to escape from this marriage was to run, so she disappeared and travelled to the Netherlands where she applied for refugee status and later became a Dutch citizen. She lied in her application which later got her into trouble when she became a member of the Dutch parliament and I think that was one of the main reasons why she had to leave the position.

    While living in the Netherlands her beliefs went through a transformation and she completely rejected Islam after the September 11th attacks, in her opinon the words of the Quran itself radicalise Muslims into submitting unquestioningly to the faith and committing such cruel acts, the radical fringe of Islam is not just some abomination of Islam. She also believes that the teachings of the Quran are directly responsible for the maltreatment of Muslim women all over the world.

    I am just reading her new book Nomad now and she is stressing again and again how irrational she finds the almost superstitious Muslim beliefs of her family. She is someone who sees truth and voicing her convictions as more important than pussyfooting around difficult issues and not trying to offend anyone. But she is still very civil in how she expresses herself, she doesn't go out of her way to be rude or controversial she simply tries to look at the facts (I think at present she still works for a think tank in Washington DC) and voice her conclusions without being hindered by some false notion of political correctness.

    The backlash especially from Muslims has been so strong that because of repeated death theats and since the murder of Theo van Gogh in 2004 she is under 24-7 protection. Her opinion is that even while having to live with bodyguards she has still more freedom than a normal Muslim woman in Saudi Arabia, Ayaan can travel, write, study etc while a normal Saudi woman can't even go on the street without a male guardian and can't drive a car or study and work without the permission of a male relative. I respect her very much since she obviously is willing to put up with a lot because of her convictions and isn't willing to be silenced. I would still go with INTJ or INFJ.

  7. #7
    The Duchess of Oddity Queen Kat's Avatar
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    I'm not against her, or anything. Our beliefs are different about many things, but she's still pretty admirable. I still think she's INFJ.
    I was sitting outside the classroom waiting to go in, and I saw an airplane hit the tower. The TV was obviously on. I used to fly myself and I said, "There's one terrible pilot."
    - George W. Bush -


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    Senior Member Lightyear's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Saint Kat View Post
    I'm not against her, or anything. Our beliefs are different about many things, but she's still pretty admirable. I still think she's INFJ.
    I didn't think you were personally against her. She is just generally seen as a very controversial woman.

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    No she's S. In spite of everything she has been through, in spite of all the books she has written and the debates that she has participated in, she has not contributed anything idiosyncratic to the cause. Ns almost always do that.

  10. #10
    Minister of Propagandhi ajblaise's Avatar
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    I just saw her on Morning Joe today, and a few times before. She gives off a soft and meek ISFP vibe, but I don't think she is one. Seems thoughtful, reflective, idealist, and resolute. INFJ looks right.

    Quote Originally Posted by Franz View Post
    She is ISTJ.
    ISTJs don't tend to go against the grain and reject their whole religion and culture like that.

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