As African-Americans we already deal with our fair share of misconceptions, prejudgements and stereotypes. But what happens when you add practicing a religion that is often misunderstood or misrepresented into the equation? Well, there you have the unique experience of being Black, Muslim, and American.
A groundbreaking new web series ‘Ask a Muslim’ hopes to spark dialogue, challenge stereotypes and answer common questions regarding Islamic lifestyles, all from a Black Muslim perspective. Produced by Nur films and presented by Black Public Media, the series interviews a balance of scholars, writers, artists, cultural observers, Imams, political figures and everyday people including: Congressman Keith Ellison, singer Sumayya Ali and comedian Omar Regan. They’re posed with questions such as “Why do Muslim women cover their hair?” and “What’s up with the Muslim brothers and beards?” to more in-depth questions on Islamic beliefs and practices. The series delves into heavy topics while also offering light-hearted commentary from participants.
Black Muslims’ unique history in this country has greatly shaped the Islamic experience in the U.S., making it an important aspect of our social fabric. And although African-American Muslims make up over 40% of native-born Muslim Americans, they’re often left out of mainstream discussions. The 6-part web series will offer unprecedented insight into the unique lives of Black American Muslims. The questions come from a pool of everyday citizens, most of whom have limited or preconceived ideas about Muslims.
According to creators, “The ‘Ask a Muslim’ series is an opportunity to change perceptions, address stereotypes, and start meaningful dialogue about the fastest growing yet most misunderstood religion on the globe, Islam.”
Check out the first episode entitled “Burqas & Beards” which addresses the Muslim dress code:
What do you think about the intersection of race, faith and identity? If you could ‘Ask A Muslim’ a question what would it be?