Remembering is a Political Act

On January 29, it will be two years since Alexandre Bissonnette shot and killed six Muslims and injured many others at the Centre Culturel Islamique de Quebec in Sainte Foy, just outside of Quebec City. The incident remains shocking for its explicit Islamophobic violence. Bissonnette went to the mosque to kill Muslims because they were Muslims. Court documents reveal some of his political views; he supported Trump’s “Muslim ban.” He was against the immigration of racialized minorities, including Muslims, because he was worried that white people, like him and his family, would lose their status and privilege as the majority.

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Recalling Ertuğrul: The Resurrection of a Legend

Since arriving in the UK last year, I would not be wrong in saying that after learning that I am from Turkey, Ertuğrul has been mentioned by almost every Muslim I have met. Indeed, there are many reasons for the recent Turkish series Diriliş: Ertuğrul (Resurrection: Ertuğrul) to be a hit among Muslims, even at very first glance: the series tells the story of the Kayı clan during the establishment of the Ottoman Empire, centring around the life of Ertuğrul, who was the father of Osman I, founder of the Ottoman Empire.

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Defining Islamophobia

A definition is not a magic spell. Defining Islamophobia will not by itself end Islamophobia. What is needed is not a detailed legal definition but one capable of circulating in broader society, and changing the way in which Islamophobia is understood and resisted. This means a definition that is brief, which builds on already existing norms of public etiquette and which triggers a debate that helps to change the national conversation.

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Reading the Islamic Republic of Iran

I recently attended an international conference in South Africa on re-evaluating civil society in the Middle East following the 2010-2011 Arab uprisings that failed to bring about lasting changes in the region. There were progressive academics, politicians and leaders of non-governmental organisations in attendance. I had prepared a paper based on my research of welfare and social services in the Islamic Republic of Iran, which I knew was quite radical. However, my presentation created controversy for different reasons than I expected.

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Being Muslim in Lynchistan

On 8th July 2018, senior advocate of the Supreme Court of India Indira Jaising stated that the “lynching of Muslims in India has become a badge of honour for the perpetrators”. Drawing parallels between the lynchings of African-Americans in the late 19th century during the advent of the Jim Crow laws, Jaising argues that lynchings and mob violence in India specifically target Muslims and she urged the Indian government to legislate anti-lynching laws for protecting Muslim minorities.

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Tunisian Imam’s call for Hajj Boycott

While this year’s Hajj is now finished, something fascinating happened in the months leading up to the festival: the General Secretary of the Union of Tunisian Imams, Fadhel Ashour, called on the Grand Mufti of the country to discourage people from performing the Hajj this year as the costs of the Hajj are too high and Saudi Arabia is using this money to wage war in other Muslim countries: “The money that goes to Saudi authorities is not used to help poor Muslims around the world.

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