While many non-Black Muslims have gained inspiration to combat racism from Malcolm X, the author of this article makes a valid point. There are quite a few non-Black Muslims who exploit Malcolm’s Muslim identity to assert a space in the broader society. They do this while ignoring the oppression experienced by their Black coreligionists stemming from centuries of systemic racism.  Below are some reflections posted about appropriation of Malcolm X from MARCMANLEY.COM: (more…) Read more

By Layla Abdullah-Poulos I was one of five Muslims chosen to participate in an Instagram project about Ramadan for Newsday.com. My primary goal is to post pictures that reflect the diverse backgrounds of Muslims.  Given the present narrative depicting Muslims as exclusively “foreign”, I find it especially important to display the array of Native-born American Muslims. Below is a link to an article about my participation in the SUNY Empire State College’ The Student Connection: Other News: Instagram Project about Ramadan… Read more

Sahar Abdulaziz is a prolific author, who has plied her craft to generate a range of books.  In her soon to be released book, The Broken Half, the author tackles domestic violence.  Set in an American Muslim community, The Broken Half engages reader about an issue plaguing Muslim communities while attempting to maintain respect for the religion and enlightening readers about the cultural distinction of being American and Muslim.  This work promises to be both captivating and intriguing. Read more

By Layla Abdullah-Poulos As an African-American Muslim, I am constantly faced with microaggressive behaviors from my non-Black coreligionists, and I have learned to overlook most of them in order to maintain solidarity.  However, when a Muslim organization like the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA), with notoriety and a history of interaction with Black communities, neglects to appreciate the socio-historical context of the Black experience in the United States, the connotations can be of broader detriment, and it should not… Read more

Alhamdulillah!  After weeks of researching, I found a book of Native-born American Muslim conversion stories.  This is just what I needed for my “Native-born American Muslim Experience” course.  So often, the experiences of NbA Muslims are mixed in with immigrant Muslim perspectives, which is fine, but it often mutes their unique and powerful platforms. It also generally results in the idea that Islam is a foreign religion for foreigners, overlooking the religion’s deep American heritages. (more…) Read more

Latino/a-American Muslims are a growing part of NbA Muslim culture.  The population is increasing through both conversion and birth, and include a variety of Latino backgrounds (i.e. Puerto Rican, Cuban, Peruvian, Dominican, Mexican, etc.).  As Latino/as influence on the American culture expands, Latino/a Muslims are becoming more significant to the American-Muslim hybrid culture. Latino/as connection to African-American communities also extend in the Islamic culture.  There is a long history of solidarity between Latino/as and African-Americans in resisting racism and oppression… Read more

I recently attended a residency for my college’s graduate students.  The residency provides an opportunity to confer about each other’s final master degree project.  It also gives graduate students a chance to discuss their research and project development with a variety of instructors. During the residency, I managed to confer with a few instructors with whom I will be working for the next few semesters.  Invariably, every one of them mentioned that they felt my final thesis was still not… Read more

Alhamdulillah, NbA Muslim Woman author Sahar Abdulaziz recently released her new children’s book “The Dino Flu”.  The book is a colorful story about a dinosaur who uses his imagination to entertain himself while sick. The book is an example of Abdulaziz’s flexibility as a writer.  Her earlier works gracefully tackled hard social issues like mood disorders, mental illness, and drug addiction.  In “The Dino Flu”, she utilizes her style to tell a story that appeals to children and adults alike…. Read more

I was recently asked by a fellow academic how did I “assimilate Western values and cultural practices into my religion” and if “there a complete disconnect” or did I “find the process mostly fluid”? Below is part of my response: (more…) Read more

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