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Teaching Against Islamophobia Seminar

Call for Proposals

Teaching Against Islamophobia is a new five-year seminar dedicated to cultivating a wider awareness of both the challenges and opportunities faced by engaged scholars combating Islamophobia. Toward that end, we will facilitate conversations at the annual meeting that

(1) explore the differences between teaching about Islam and teaching about Islamophobia in both the classroom and wider publics;

(2) imagine how pedagogical strategies for such teaching have to be tailored to different contexts;

(3) consider the specific challenges of teaching ‘against’ a concept instead of teaching ‘toward’ a more positive end; and (4) understand how Islamophobia and anti-Muslim bigotry function as a form of racism and why naming this bigotry as racism is important.

In the first year, we seek papers from scholars in any discipline or subfield that address questions related to the theme “Islamophobia - Connecting the Global and the Local,” with a focus on teaching. An epidemic of anti-Muslim bigotry and racism has emerged not only in the United States and Europe, but globally. Often, however, these events that are important to engaged scholars may feel distant to our students.

We are soliciting submissions that address any of the following aspects of this theme and welcome related topics and inquiries that go beyond these questions as well:

  1. What are techniques and strategies that are effective for contextually locating Islamophobia that occurs outside North American cultural contexts?

  2. How do we begin to overcome the tendency of students to distance themselves from a shared responsibility for Islamophobia when they are confronted by either global or local instances of anti-Muslim bigotry?

  3. What are the competing challenges and advantages of using education about Islamophobia to stimulate interreligious dialogue?

  4. When addressing major news stories featuring anti-Muslim policies, what skills do students need to develop in order to move ‘beyond the headline?’ How might these skills be transferable or adapted to contexts where scholars are asked to address wider publics?

  5. What are the professional and scholarly risks and challenges we face when we name anti-Muslim bias in our educational setting or local communities? How do we begin to address these challenges or mitigate these risks?

Papers and other documents related to presentations will be pre-circulated to the seminar listserv. Please contact a member of the leadership of the seminar for access. Since materials will be pre-circulated, preference will be given to presentations that go beyond the traditional ‘paper-reading’ structure. We seek presentations that will dynamically introduce teaching modules, pedagogical practices, teaching reflections, slides, professional documents or other materials during the time of the seminar.

Statement of Purpose

The purpose of the Teaching Against Islamophobia Seminar is to widen the network of scholars engaged in critical reflection about pedagogical and discursive praxes that address the global rise of anti-Muslim sentiment. This seminar thus focuses on the challenges and opportunities faced by engaged scholars combating Islamophobia. We invite critical and creative reflection on (1) the differences between teaching about Islam and teaching about Islamophobia in both the classroom and wider publics; (2) pedagogical strategies for such teaching should be tailored to different contexts; (3) specific challenges of teaching ‘against’ a concept instead of teaching ‘toward’ a more positive end; and (4) the ways in which Islamophobia and anti-Muslim bigotry function as a form of racism and why naming this bigotry as racism is important. As such, we encourage discussion not only on the transmission of new content knowledge about Islamophobia, but also on the transmission of interpersonal and leadership skills necessary to engage in public life to resist bias, bigotry, and racism.

Chairs

Steering Committee Members

Method

PAPERS

Review Process

Proposer names are visible to chairs but anonymous to steering committee members