Edward E. Curtis IV: The Perils of Public Scholarship on Islam After 9/11
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by EDWARD E. CURTIS IV for PRACTICAL MATTERS JOURNAL (ISSUE 5), SPRING 2012:
I have been a professor of religious studies since 2000. So, for most of my career, I have taught about religion in time of war. My teaching, both inside the classroom and out, has been shaped, even constrained by the fact that my own country is responsible for much of the war-making. U.S. military interventions have resulted in the deaths of hundreds of thousands in Iraq and Afghanistan.1 I feel a deep personal connection to and a professional stake in the places and people against which my own government has waged war. I feel the costs of war at home, too. The USA PATRIOT Act, extraordinary rendition, the reclassification of U.S. citizens as enemy combatants, and aggressive counter-intelligence have made me afraid of my own government—and even more afraid for people who look like me but have foreign accents and Muslim-sounding names. Continue reading →
POLL: How We View Arabs and Muslims
by ARAB AMERICAN INSTITUTE on AUGUST 22, 2012:
Conducted on August 15th and 16th, 2012, “The American Divide: How We View Arabs and Muslims”, surveys American attitudes toward Arabs, Muslims and eleven other groups and religions. Among other things, the poll highlights a sharp generational and partisan divide with respect to views on Arabs and Muslims. In 2010 – in the wake of the Park 51 controversy, AAI conducted a similar poll on views toward Arabs and Muslims.
The data extracted from both polls indicates that anti-Arab and anti-Muslim political rhetoric has taken a toll on American public opinion, especially along age and party lines. Continue reading →
by BRUCE LAWRENCE (This essay will appear in the journal “Critical Muslim 2: The Idea of Islam” (Volume 2) to be published on September 25, 2012):
Muslim cosmopolitanism seemed to me the most natural of dinner table topics. But my family and friends around the dinner table had other ideas. Many had never heard of Muslim cosmopolitanism, and so when I asked for initial responses to what it might mean, I received some unexpected responses.
My daughter thought it sounded like an oxymoron. Isn’t ‘cosmopolitan’ the opposite of religious identity? No one talks about Christian or Jewish cosmopolitans. How can there be Muslim cosmopolitans? My brother-in-law exclaimed, ‘I think it’s too elitist. After all, cosmopolitans are jet setters. Perhaps some wealthy Gulf Arabs might qualify. But the Arab spring is moving towards summer: no folks from Cairo or Tunis or Tripoli are eager to be called cosmopolitan, and so the term is meaningless for them, and for most Muslims.’
Carnegie Council Appoints Eleven More Global Ethics Fellows
by CARNEGIE COUNCIL FOR ETHICS IN INTERNATIONAL AFFAIRS on AUGUST 27, 2012:
Global Ethics Fellows lie at the heart of Carnegie Council’s Global Ethics Network, a platform for educational institutions around the world to create and share interactive multimedia resources.
The Network was launched as part of the Council’s three-year Centennial project: Ethics for a Connected World. Through the Network, Fellows enable their students to interact with other students and educators around the world. Fellows meet annually at Carnegie Council in New York to exchange ideas for research, teaching, and public engagement.
Selected Fellows will also host site visits to generate dialogues on the local dimensions of global issues such as economic development, corruption, and climate change. The latest 11 Fellows to join the roster are based in India, Japan, Korea, Singapore, and the United States: Continue reading →
BOOK: A Jihad for Justice — Honoring the Work and Life of Amina Wadud
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edited by KECIA ALI, JULIANE HAMMER, and LAURY SILVERS in 2012:
It all started with a workshop fittingly titled: “Constructing Muslim ‘Feminist Ethics: Gendered power Relations in the Qur’an and the Prophetic Example.” In October 2010, the three of us, Kecia Ali, Laury Silvers and Juliane Hammer, along with Fatima Seedat, invited a group of Muslim women scholars to George Mason University in Fairfax, VA, to discuss our shared and longstanding interests in questions of Qur’anic hermeneutics, gender roles, and the ethics of rethinking both. We invited Hina Azam, Aysha Hidayatullah, and Saadia Yacoob. Amina Wadud was our guest of honor. Our conversations were honest, wide-ranging, and productive. And it was at the end of the workshop that the idea for this volume was born. Continue reading →