According to Dr. Hussein Rashid a religious literacy expert and cultural competency consultant who teaches at the New School in New York, if you don’t appreciate the religious and spiritual dimension of music you miss the depth of the genre.
Smithsonian Events – Smithsonian Jazz Masterworks Orchestra presents “Islam and Modern Jazz” – December 8, 2019, 7:30 – 9:30pm EST
The undeniable link between Islam and jazz music led one critic to proclaim that the faith was the “unofficial religion of bebop.” Alongside early converts such as William Evans (Yusef Lateef), Frederick Russell Jones (Ahmad Jamal), Leo Morris (Idris Muhammad), and Art Blakey (Abdullah Ibn Buhaina), many jazz musicians discovered a spiritual foundation that inspired strength and dignity through Islam. From Eastern modes to Western melodies, the impact of Islam on the soul of American jazz ranks second only to that of Southern black churches. In the big band format, the Smithsonian Jazz Masterworks Orchestra will present a program of jazz created, performed, and inspired by practitioners of Islam.
Join us for a pre-concert talk by Hussein Rashid, PhD, lecturer at The New School, and founder of islamicate, a consultancy focusing on religious literacy and cultural competency. This concert is part of the Sounds of Faith series, examining the religious roots of American musical traditions.
Sounds of Faith programming is made possible by the generous support of Lilly Endowment Inc.
Hussein Rashid, independent scholar of religion, also tweeted that he’d seen nothing in his conference registration documents to suggest QR codes were a possibility. The society was therefore retroactively changing its terms of attendance, he said, raising the possibility that someone could refuse to be scanned, be denied entry and later challenge the academy legally.
This distinct collection brings together scholars from a range of disciplines including literature, cultural studies, religious studies, pedagogy, and communications to engage with a single character, exploring Khan’s significance for a broad readership.
Building a positive sense of identity is critical to children’s healthy development and, ultimately, to their futures. Seeing characteristics like their race, gender, and religion in a positive light gives kids a pathway to success in school and in life—and research shows that valuing their own identities helps children grow into more confident and accepting adolescents and adults.
NYCC ‘19: Wilson, Shammas, Alfageeh & Henderson on Orientalism in comics & the White, Western gaze – The Beat
Rashid began proceedings by citing theorist Edward Said and describing Orientalism as “a Western style for dominating, restructuring, and having authority over the Orient.” The othering that Orientalism does to Asian and Arab cultures, he continued, is “a tool of colonization, a means of convincing people that some people are less worthy of their humanity.” The panellists nodded along, taking this definition as their starting point for discussion.
In turn, each panelist presented some examples of where we see Orientalism in comics. Rashid mentioned the all-encompassing and highly problematic “Siancong” war recently seen in the pages of History of the Marvel Universe, C.B. Cebulski’s ‘Akira Yoshida’ yellowface act, and the 2011 graphic novel Habibi.
Narrative Change Through Satirical Storytelling (podcast #17): Zeyba Rahman, senior program officer for The Doris Duke Foundation for Islamic Art's Building Bridges Program; Josh Seftel, filmmaker and creator of “The Secret Life of Muslims” series; Hussein Rashid, adjunct faculty member in the Department of Religion at Barnard College who focuses his research on Muslim and American pop culture; and Negin Farsad, Iranian-American writer and comedian who you can find on Netflix, HBO, and other media platforms, are interviewed by Nadia Elokdah, deputy director and director of programs of GIA. They discuss their recent film, The History of Muslims in the US, and share how they have used creative methods for shifting narratives and culture as a strategy towards equity.
Hussein Rashid, professor at Columbia University and himself once the coordinator for CPOI, said he arranged this tour for Jamati members in order to “seize opportunities to expand our knowledge,” following Mawlana Hazar Imam’s general guidance. “As an Ismaili Muslim, I believe it’s important that we learn about and engage with our history in ways that do not isolate us but recognize our role in the world. As a result, I look for opportunities that allow [me] to experience my history and faith and try to share [this] with members of the Jamat.”
CYRIC’s founder, A. David Lewis, is himself a comics and graphic novel author. He started the organisation as a way to help Syrian refugee children by preserving their cultural heritage. “Specifically, it focuses on traditional Syrian stories,” CYRIC board member Hussein Rashid explained. “It helps the children, and hopefully will aid in making sure some part of Syrian story culture persists.”