Beyond Hijab: Writing about Muslims
(Sarah Harvard, Margari Hill, Fareeha Molvi, Zahra Noorbakhsh, Amina Waheed)
With the rise of Islamophobia and the election of Trump, the demand for information on Muslims is at an all-time high. In response, publications are hungry for stories that shed light on this vastly misrepresented swath of the population. To that end, every day newsfeeds across America are filled with stories on the trials and tribulations of Muslim women wearing the hijab – a positive step toward inclusivity.
But in the scramble to enlighten, are editors and writers actually contributing to a one-dimensional portrayal of the Muslim experience? For the many Muslims who do not wear hijab or identify as Middle Eastern, these pieces do not reflect their reality. These individuals are also negotiating their Muslim identities, breaking down institutional barriers and unfortunately, facing discrimination on account of their faith. Yet in chasing hijab stories, are we discounting their voices and ultimately running counter to the goal of true inclusivity?
This panel seeks to broaden the narrative of Muslim women in media by highlighting the diversity that exists within our community. We hope to challenge storytellers to engage in richer conversations than surface-level stories of what we wear, or don’t wear, on our heads.
No advance sign-up necessary for attendees.