Mapping Muslim Diasporas - Confronting Islamophobia

Confronting Islamophobia

The ability to define one's life, history, and lived realities from one's own perspective is the critical first step towards self-determination and liberation. However, the history and understanding of Muslims has been defined by those hostile to Islam and Muslims, most often for larger political purposes and agendas. In the last eight years, this has been particularly evident in our foreign policies, media coverage, academic and intellectual discourses, policing tactics, and even within social justice movements. If we understand Islamophobia as the unfounded animosity towards Islam, and subsequently fear and dislike of all or most Muslims, then it becomes essential that the articulation of their experiences is voiced by Muslims themselves, and representative of their diversity.

This multi-year project, Confronting Islamophobia, will cut at the roots of the problem. The project is directly in line with the mission of College of Ethnic Studies of critical scholarship that is grounded in issues of social justice. The benefits of this project are threefold, all of which would put SF STATE and the College of Ethnic Studies at the forefront as the model academic program for the study of Muslim diasporic communities, as well as education and training of Muslim students:

  1. To center the voices and critical scholarship of Muslims at SF STATE, national and international intellectual spaces
  2. To develop an academically rigorous and innovative curriculum relevant to Muslim communities and their children
  3. To train young Muslim students in grassroots organizing skills that will be utilized in conjunction with the critical thinking skills imparted to combat Islamophobia on campus as well as in their respective communities and society at large

The primary objectives of this project are also threefold:

  1. To shape the curriculum and environment at AMED and SF STATE to be reflective of and conducive to combating Islamophobia
  2. To publish an anthology on Islamophobia drawing together scholarship produced from the various components of this project that can be used in academic courses
  3. To convene a conference on confronting Islamophobia at SF STATE in 2011 in collaboration with other universities and institutions that builds upon a similar conference held at Berkeley in Fall 2008, and also upon the various components of this project

“Islamophobia: Gender, Sexuality and Racism” Working Group

The primary goal of this working group is to develop analyses of the place of gender, sexuality, and race in Islamophobia and the effects of Islamophobia on gendered, sexualized, and racialized subjects. Read more about the Islamophobia working group