I think the editors of the clip did a great job with my interview. I love the question they generated: “When Should You Push People Beyond Their Comfort Zone?”
The notion of what it means to be a Muslim in the western world is explained quite well by Dr. Hussein Rashid, Professor of Religious Studies at Hofstra University in New York and Associate Editor of Religion Dispatches. As an academic, a speaker, and an educator, Professor Rashid’s topics are generally focused on Islam and its followers, interfaith issues, religion and politics, and religion and popular culture, including news media. He has appeared on CBS Evening News, CNN, Russia Today, Channel 4 (UK), and State of Belief—Air America Radio.
“The reality is that Muslims are people, so show them as people,” says Dr. Rashid, indicating that media’s role is not to colour a story by injecting a religious angle into it. “Religion is important, but it is not the whole story,” he adds.
Virginia Theological Seminary (VTS) welcomes Dr. Hussein Rashid to campus this week as the Center for Anglican Communion Studies’ (CACS) Visiting Muslim Scholar. During his eight week stay at the Seminary, Rashid will teach a course entitled, “Not so Common Stories: Prophets in the Qur’an and the Bible.”
“Dr. Rashid’s enthusiasm for interreligious engagement, vast experience, and engaging demeanor will make him extremely popular with our students,” said the Rev. Robin Razzino, interreligious officer for CACS. “Having a scholar with his background will allow VTS to continue to offer students opportunities to be in conversation with others who can help inform their ministries.”
Thanks to the Luce Grant, we are delighted to welcome to the campus Dr. Hussein Rashid. With a PhD from Harvard University, he describes himself as a ‘proud Muslim and native New Yorker’. He has his own ‘in between’ ministry for he teaches at both Hofstra University and the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College. With a range of fascinating interests from the impact of 9/11 on Muslim adolescents to emerging Muslim-American musics, he is a cutting edge scholar with an international reputation.
Everyday Art: The Islamic Impact on American Arts
Sunday, February 13th
Michael C. Carlos Museum of Emory University
571 South Kilgo Circle
Atlanta, GA 30322
Presented by Dr. Hussein Rashid, visiting professor at Virginia Theological Seminary
American popular culture—the art that surrounds us every day—reflects the tremendous cultural diversity of the American people, and helps to shape the way Americans understand themselves. Perhaps the least understood of these influences is the cultural impact of the various Muslim communities that have settled in the United States.
Starting from the period of slavery and continuing through to the present day, the tapestry of influences that converge in popular music, architecture, and literature—the arts we engage with every day—bears witness to the presence of Muslims in America.
In this richly illustrated talk, Dr. Hussein Rashid explores the Islamic impact on American popular culture using examples from multiple communities and time periods throughout American history.
Dr. Hussein Rashid is a passionate instructor at one of the largest interfaith centers in Manhattan, housed at the Park Avenue Christian Church. He is also an Associate Editor at Religion Dispatches, and has appeared on CBS Evening News, CNN, Russia Today, Channel 4 (UK), and State of Belief—Air America Radio.
This program is generously sponsored by His Highness Prince Aga Khan Shia Imami Ismaili Council for the Southeastern United States.
This lecture is free and open to the public.
Image Credits (above): Comedian Aasif Mandvi and Boxer Muhammad Ali, Wikipedia Commons Cover Art, Domestic Crusaders, McSweeney´s Magazine