Come for a special night investigating how young Muslim Americans resist empire through hip hop and other musical subcultures. Su'ad Abdul Khabeer calls it “Muslim Cool”—her term for how young Muslims in the United States fight state power by engaging with Black identity, particularly through fashion and music. In a time when Black Muslims face both Islamophobia and anti-blackness, her work represents a vital intervention. Zain Alam, the lead singer of the band Humeysha, loops samples of North Indian soundscapes with lyrics that shift between English, Hindi and Urdu to imagine a new Muslim sonic culture, inspired equally by My Bloody Valentine and J Dilla. They’ll speak with the Canadian-Somali writer Muna Mire, a contributor to The New Inquiry, Vice, and The New York Times Magazine.
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$5 SUGGESTED DONATION | OPEN TO THE PUBLIC
Zain Alam is an artist whose work explores South Asian artistic traditions, transnational movements in the Islamic world, and diasporic identity in the U.S. He was recently BHQFU Fellow at ArtCenter/South Florida and is currently a graduate student in Islamic studies at Harvard University, and the frontman of the NYC-based recording project Humeysha.
Muna Mire’s work can be found at the New York Times Magazine, Teen Vogue, The New Republic, Mask Magazine, The Nation, and VICE. She works at The Rundown with Robin Thede, a new late night comedy show on BET. Read their Twitter @Muna_Mire and their classic piece, “Towards a Black Muslim Ontology of Resistance” in The New Inquiry.
Dr. Abdul-Khabeer is a scholar, artist and activist. Her new book "Muslim Cool: Race, Religion and Hip Hop in the United States" is a timely analysis of the richness and complexity of American Islam.
"This groundbreaking study of race, religion and popular culture in the 21st century United States focuses on a new concept, “Muslim Cool.” Muslim Cool is a way of being an American Muslim—displayed in ideas, dress, social activism in the ’hood, and in complex relationships to state power. Constructed through hip hop and the performance of Blackness, Muslim Cool is a way of engaging with the Black American experience by both Black and non-Black young Muslims that challenges racist norms in the U.S. as well as dominant ethnic and religious structures within American Muslim communities"
Sponsored by Penn Sapelo:
Penn Sapelo is a newly formed campus group for Black Muslim students and their allies at Penn who are committed to exploring and celebrating the intersection of race, religion, culture and identity. Penn Sapelo's mission is to lift up the unique contributions of Black Muslims to Penn's campus and general society. "We are wholeheartedly devoted to advocating on behalf of diversity, inclusion, racial solidarity and social justice in the American Muslim community, Black community and beyond"
In the wake of a tumultuous election cycle, we have witnessed a resurgence of activism across the country. This movement mobilized organizations, artists, activists, community members, allies, and individuals (some who have been inspired to be politically involved for the first time). As America’s first Black president has left office, many look to Hip Hop as a bridge to our globalized world and a soundtrack to the streets.
This event, featuring Dr. Su'ad Abdul Khabeer, Kyle (HPrizm) Austin, and moderated by Alden Young (African Studies director), will focus on Dr. Su'ad Abdul Khabeer's new book Muslim Cool: Race, Religion, and Hip Hop in the United States. Dr. Su'ad Abdul Khabeer will define "Muslim Cool" and how Muslims, specifically living in the United States, have combined Islam, Blackness, and Hip Hop to create a new and independent identity. The role of Hip Hop will be discussed from its origins until today in defining "Muslim Cool" as a platform for social activism. Additionally, the panelists will tackle the enduring questions surrounding the future of Hip-Hop, and the ways that black, Muslim and women activists have used hip-hop as a soundtrack for liberation.
Co-sponsored by: the Africana Studies Program, the Women’s and Gender Studies Program, the College of Arts and Sciences, and the Department of Global Studies and Modern Languages
The inaugural year of the Drexel Global Passport Series (GPS) centers on "Global Civic Engagement.” Drexel GPS seeks to facilitate global conversations at Drexel and in Philadelphia to ensure rich student engagement and build strong partnerships with local communities and organizations. If you would like to be placed on the GPS list-serve, please contact Jacqueline Rios at firstname.lastname@example.org
Su’ad Abdul Khabeer discusses MSu'ad Abdul Khabeer discusses "Muslim Cool: Race, Religion and Hip Hop in the United States." She will be joined in conversation by Alireza Doostdar.
Presented in partnership with Center for the Study of Race, Politics & Culture (CSRPC)
Part panel conversation, part hip-hop performance, this event explores forms of cultural expression that push back against dominant ideas about Muslim identity. Moderated by Prof. Sammy Alim with performers Su'ad Abdul Khabeer, Mark Gonzales, and The Narcicyst.
It is important, both for this life and the next, to seek to rectify the racism we find in our communities. This session aims to directly address a lack of representation in the college MSA space as a microcosm of larger Islamic organizations lacking the same kind of diversity. We will provide tools, advice, and solutions for Muslims of all ages on how to make an Islamic space inclusive to all people.
Panelists: Su'ad Abdul Khabeer, Margari Hill, Eric Powell
Where: O'hare Ballroom