There are also problems among Germans, it's not just the Turks, a young man points out. Necla Kelek is familiar with this objection -- it's one she hears again and again. She grimaces for a moment but then smiles gently and says in a confessional tone, "There are also a lot of things not right in Germany." The young man is satisfied, and Necla Kelek later admits that certainly not all Muslims pose a problem for democracy in Germany. In fact most of them certainly don't -- but there are still the few who do and they are the ones she has chosen to focus on. It's the problems she is concerned with, she says.

Kelek, 52, a German woman with Turkish roots, is sitting in the cultural center in Achim, a town near Bremen in northern Germany. She has just finished a reading from her new book, "Himmelsreise" ("Journey to Heaven"). The book casts a critical look at Islam and condemns the oppression and lack of freedom within Turkish communities and families in Germany.

Such views have made Kelek a controversial figure. The center-left Süddeutsche Zeitung has labeled her a "hate monger," while the center-right Frankfurter Allgemeine Sonntagszeitung has called her a "holy warrior." People often talk about Kelek in the same breath as Henryk M. Broder, a controversial polemic journalist who writes for Spiegel. The interesting thing about Kelek is that she defends all of the terms that form the basis of German society: freedom, democracy, enlightenment, secular order, civil society. Yet in doing so, she draws harsh criticism from Germans. She's a woman who makes people uneasy. But why?

One accusation is that Kelek has been unable to rid herself of the humiliation she suffered at the hands of her own family and that this is why she condemns Islam as a whole. Kelek has often recounted her life story. As a child, she came from Turkey to a small city in the German state of Lower Saxony, but never fully arrived in Germany. Breaks were the worst part of the school day because she stood around alone, not knowing what to do. Before and after school, Kelek lived in a completely Turkish world. Her father ran that world like a dictator, her mother obeyed, and the children had to humbly serve their father. Read full article at Spiegel Online International...