The Casual Vacancy

Today marks thirteen years since the devastating terrorist attack of 9/11. Great changes have been made recently in international politics, and today, a tragic reminder, provides an opportunity for us to reflect on such changes. More recently, it marks shortly over a month since Baroness Sayeeda Warsi, the first Muslim—let alone Pakistani female—to be in office’s, resignation. The Casual Vacancy was also released in 2012.

Baroness Warsi held office for two years before her resignation. As Oliver Wright interviewed her, Mrs. Warsi described in her interview with Oliver Wright how she wanted “to be able to live with myself after politics.” According to Hugh Muir for The Guardian, Baroness Warsi thought the government’s uprooting, bulldozing literally and figuratively, was obstructing the lives of people with no change or plan of action to be implemented.

J.K. Rowling, most noted for her seven-book phenomenon Harry Potter, addresses this issue, almost prophetically, in her novel The Casual Vacancy. While the timing of her resignation seems peculiar, after being in office for two years, one month after her resignation, much has changed in politics. Not only has President Obama declared War against ISIS, Baroness Warsi stated in an interview with Oliver Wright, she stated she “wanted to be able to live with myself after politics.”

Baroness Warsi’s resignation leaves the world wondering, who will fill the Casual Vacancy of this first Muslim cabinet member of British Parliament. J.K. Rowling, who so insightfully almost predicted this occurrence, states on her website that she does not believe in fate but “hard work and luck, and that first often leads to the second.” Similar to a character in The Casual Vacancy, Baroness Warsi also decided to resign. Is it too mystic to draw the parallels?

If this is so, can Baroness Warsi’s resignation lead to a movement of conscientious humanists resisting government but humbly rejecting it? Or has Baroness Warsi’s resignation display her neglecting her role and gender in politics? If the first, Baroness Warsi had a noble and humble resignation, leaving a Casual Vacancy.

Louisa Lamb has her B.A. in Psychology and is an independent researcher and journalist reporting on the underclass and marginalized. She can be reached c/o louisaalamb@gmail.com

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