32 Photos That Hope To Change The Way We Look At Muslim American Women Basma Sayedi March 31, 2014 Tweet Well the month of March is winding down, and it sure has taught us a lot about Muslim identity – particularly that of women. From Abu Essa Gate to Alice in Arabia, March has truly been a memorable month for women’s history – especially Muslim women. To commemorate Women’s History Month, we collected photos of Muslim American women. This project was inspired by a Buzzfeed article called 44 Stock Photos That Hope To Change The Way We Look At Women compiled by Ashley Perez. We’ve compiled thirty-two images. One for each day of March, plus another because no one month can contain the awesomeness of Muslim Women. These images show the status and the importance of Muslim women in our society. Muslim women are liberated, educated, and play the most important roles in our society. Update(7:30 pm EST): The purpose and intent of this article is not to showcase the ethnic and racial diversity of Muslimahs. No one article can do that. We meant to express the diversity of the roles Muslimahs play in society and to begin to re-frame how they are thought about. Going forward we will make sure to be all inclusive. *** (1) Saba Chaudhry Barnard – Professional Artist (If you looked at the featured image for this article and thought it was awesome, that’s because SHE painted it!) (Photo credit: Noor Iskandar) (2) Ameena Mirza Qazi – Attorney and Civil Rights Advocate (3) Maryam Amirebrahimi – Religious Scholar, Speaker, and Writer (4) Sarah Kureshi – MD, MPH Assistant Professor of Family Medicine at Georgetown University School of Medicine (5) Zainab Ismail – Professional Fitness Trainer at Nadoona Fitness (6) Amal Sayedi – Full Time Mother, Part Time Student (7) Sadia Naeb – Professional Make Up Artist and Hair Stylist (8) Dina El-Nakhal – Civil Engineer (9) Aliyah Mohammed – Professional Journalist (10) Ayah Koleilat – Dental School Bound Soccer Talent (11) Fatima Ali – Professional New York Sous Chef (12) Frankees Samad – Professional Fashion Designer (13) Fatima ElKabti – Optometry Student (14) Khadija Abid – Aspiring Violinist (15) Sadia Saifuddin – First Ever Muslim University Of California Student Regent Designate (16) Lena Khan – Professional Film Director and Producer (17) Sabah Azam – Professional Photographer at Sabah Azam Photography (18) Sara Hassan – Educator and Coach (19) Reem Suleiman – Student and Free Spirit (20) Lula Abusalih – An Educator with a Ph.D in Education (21) Nashwah Akhtar – Communication and Public Diplomacy Student, and Artist (22) Fatima Mekkaoui – Fashion Fighting Famine Model (23) Hosai Mojaddidi – Inspirational and Religious Speaker, Co Founder of Mental Health For Muslims (24) Fatima Salman – Educator and Inspirer (25) Bihter Ozedirne – Integral Member of Google’s Legal Team (26) – Kulsoom Abdullah– Competitive Weight Lifter (27) – Sherrel Johnson – Community Relations Manager (28) Rawan Kaddoura – Social Work Intern, Teacher, and Refugee Tutor (29) Noor Hussein – Student and Saxophone Enthusiast (30) Mariam Naguib – Student Athlete (31) Taqwa Abdallah – Entrepreneur and Owner of Taqwizzle’s Cakes (32) Barbara Hassan – Clinic Office Supervisor – Adolescent Division Comments Call for Subjects | artbysaba says: March 31, 2014 at 2:41 pm […] was included in a list of beautiful photographs of American Muslim women: hereIf you scroll down to the comments section, there is a pretty clear and legitimate concern with this […] the bee and the butterfly | wood turtle says: April 1, 2014 at 11:57 am […] ongoing talk online about the need to creatively challenge how people think about Muslim American (and Canadian) women, as well as Twitter #hashtag campaigns challenging what it […] That Oppressive Piece Of Cloth | Journalism by Jabeen Akhter says: April 3, 2014 at 5:46 am […] Speaking from personal experience, I now feel more free to be more assertive and have my words heard. After wearing the hijab, I left all traces of vanity and focused more on the state of what’s inside rather than what shows on the outside. Being able to do this, to me, is success. […] Media failure * Slaughter tweet * Afghan vote | Moozweek says: April 4, 2014 at 5:04 am […] a website that covers Muslims in America, has posted a thought-provoking collection of 32 photos it hopes will change the way people look at Muslim American women. The intriguing […] Race And Why It Matters » ThrivalRoom says: April 7, 2014 at 4:27 pm […] is a Fellow Thriver’s response to the article and pictorial “32 Photos that Hope to Change the Way We Look at Muslim American Women“. This response is not intended to discredit the intentions of the article’s author, […] The Bee and the Butterfly says: April 9, 2014 at 4:02 am […] ongoing talk online about the need to creatively challenge how people think aboutMuslim American (and Canadian) women, as well as Twitter #hashtag campaigns challenging what it […] Interview | Art by Saba Barnard | Ayesha & Umair's Blog says: April 11, 2014 at 9:26 am […] so I also came across Mrs. Barnard. I learned of her when I read Thrival Room‘s article 32 Photos That Hope to Change the Way We Look at Muslim American Women– must-read article highlighting great American Muslim […] My Interview With a Muslim American Artist » ThrivalRoom says: May 8, 2014 at 9:50 am […] 32 Photos That Hope To Change The Way We Look At Muslim American Women […] MuslimARC says: September 29, 2014 at 8:23 am […] out every other day that lists Muslim Women on the rise in various fields including fashion and said list has little to no Brown faces…there’s a problem. When bloggers like Nadira of Nadira037 has been blogging for years (before […] Hibo Xassan:August 10, 2015 at 2:41 pmmansha allah my dear sisters and mothers Allah guide us what is bad all hamdulilah Hijab:July 6, 2015 at 11:12 amHijab : Free shiping worldwide 55% all products (click my name) Sonam Kapoor:June 11, 2015 at 12:41 pmThanks more information best company provide for Export Packers and Movers India moving services. http://www.export5th.in/ http://www.export5th.in/packers-and-movers-in-gurgaon/ http://www.export5th.in/packers-and-movers-in-pune/ http://www.export5th.in/packers-and-movers-in-mumbai/ http://www.export5th.in/packers-and-movers-in-hyderabad/ http://www.export5th.in/packers-and-movers-in-bangalore/ http://www.export5th.in/packers-and-movers-in-chennai/ http://www.export5th.in/packers-and-movers-in-delhi/ Aathif Azmi:May 4, 2015 at 10:41 amma sha allah felt inspiring after watching these pictures of our great ummah may allah be with our sisters ! ameen! Chris Thach:April 27, 2015 at 9:29 pmWow, who would have guessed that Muslim American women are just like anyone else, shocker! *Sarcasm* Great article. Basheer Abdul Ali:November 2, 2014 at 5:09 amThen we as African Americans must produce a photo article like this one. Yes, i truly thought this as well! Then, I thought of the intent (which was excellent), then too, Afrian Am. Muslims must get more involed in promoting themselves. .. Paula Key:September 18, 2014 at 3:40 pmI had a wonderful coffee encounter with a woman wearing a hajib and her husband in a shopping mall in Toronto, Canada. We shared our views on Islam. The couple were still grieving the loss of their son who was killed in Iran by Muslim terrorists. We shared that we were a Canadian married lesbian couple. This did not matter to them. They invited us to their home. I have blogged this encounter on http://stories4hotbloodedlesbians.com (NOT a porn site) Adam Carroll:July 5, 2014 at 6:04 pmhowever all in all its a nice and spiriting group! Adam Carroll:July 5, 2014 at 6:03 pmComing to this late. Yes it is not a good sign that African American Muslimas were left out-- they should be added! And though it is true that we should celebrate the achievements and the drive of our sisters, I also could caution that more stigma attaches to Muslim men in the so called mainstream society (arguably) and so men also deserve a collective shout out in the same style. Why not celebrate each other? Sena Lawson:April 27, 2014 at 10:53 pmI'm surprised they didn't put Yuna on the list. (she's a Malaysian singer/songwriter) Uzma Saeed:April 3, 2014 at 3:04 pmThe most beloved thing about islam is that it rises against racism. And here we are so indulge d in this act. I was looking at the pics not so much for race ratherefor the ir achievements. Terri Plez:April 3, 2014 at 5:13 amFor those who didn't feel represented here, perhaps a browse at this site could compensate somehow, in sha Allah. http://www.wisemuslimwomen.org/100muslimwomen/ Latifah Abdus-Salaam:April 3, 2014 at 12:52 amI was saying the same thing like, the author said the intent was not show racial or ethnicity but diversity of what we do, so this author could not locate one person of color that participate in a diverse career or art form. Come on, not even Ibtihaj Muhammad. Additionally sisters, when we find pictures to represent us, im asking why r we selecting images not of ourselves!!! Mirna S. Prasaja:April 2, 2014 at 6:23 pmI salute all of the muslim women presented in this article. Why don't we just show the support instead of critizing? Constructive words are great, but deliver the message in a kind way. A'ishah Amatullah:April 2, 2014 at 4:55 pmwhere are the black muslim women? where are the east asian muslim women? where are the many muslim women working blue collar jobs? Daniel Oliver:April 2, 2014 at 2:27 pmAre you ignoring single African-Americans and Latinas on purpose? Of course you are; you're a typical Asiatic-American Muslim. Do us a favor, next time you post your "we're really white, please accept us" racist garbage, don't call it Islam, OK? We occasionally like to think of ourselves as people, too. P.S. Yes, you are racist. Here's how and why: http://blackarabia.blogspot.com/2011/07/aryanization-of-islam.html Jennie Cowgill:April 2, 2014 at 4:17 amInstead of all the banter, why not sugest something constructive. Say create an article that does represent what you are looking for. By the way I am a 45 year old caucasian woman with blond hair and blue eyes. I may have not have seen a woman in the article that represented some of they same physical distinctions as myself, however I did recognize my Muslim sisters. InshaAllah, we as Muslim women have more wisdom, and creativity than to feel the need to create further desention between ourselves. C Angel Handley:April 2, 2014 at 4:10 amAs an African American muslim woman I must say that I did not notice whatsoever that there were no African American women featured (it has been said that the woman being called african american is actually sudanese while by african american we are referring to those who have inherited their position in this nation from their enslaved anscestors before america as a nation or idea existed). I wasn't looking for black women, I was more scanning for both powerful reflections of muslim women and a reflection of myself in terms of interpretation of the deen as I rarely ever see the "more conservative" muslim women being represented, other than that I was, tisk-tsking about stringed instruments and things that are too tight to be called hijab. Now, for the people who are mad at the Af Amr women for mentioning this: African Americans have carried Islam in America for some time now, even since the days of our being imported to build the nation you now enjoy. you care about us when we are your sirraj wahaaj, your amir' Loon" muhaddith, your abu taubahs, your malcolm x's and the likes, but unless we have celebrity and fame to humanize us, its like we don't exist. 32 women and not one being african american is a loud and clear statement, even more clear since it was one that was made unintentionally. We are, by exclusing african americans, reinforcing theidea that Islam is something foreign when peolpe need to realize that it is also domestic, homegrown, and all-american as apple pie, the deen has BEEN here and that is the point. If there wren't one arab, what would you think? now imagine if it was done in an arab country (they may call us african-american but we are centuries removed from africa, we are THE americans, when you build a country, you Are its people, deserving no hyphenation of identity) Don't be mad at folks who are shocked at being overlooked in their own native land. Fatima Haro:April 2, 2014 at 4:38 amC Angel Handley girl am angry now for real. How come they don't have a single African American Sister on the pictures? They say "32 photos that hope to change the way we look at Muslim American women" but all I see is everyone except African American Sisters. Now that's a shame. Thank you my dear for sharing this with us. And may I say you write so well Ma Sha Allah. You should become a write. Peggy Jordan Halter:April 2, 2014 at 3:13 amThe symbol of subjugation of Muslim women with head coverings (and absence in news coverage) is an archaic vestige of male unjust and unjustified male domination. Think about it ladies - which gender best personifies what is good and right? Nasima Ali:April 2, 2014 at 1:59 amWhen I looked through these pictures, the thought of race did not enter my mind. And I was proud of my ummah, that way. My race is not represented either, but I see plenty of minorities, for which all Muslims should be cheering. Sitembile T. Malikah Reynolds:April 2, 2014 at 1:12 amWHY IS BEING NAKED or darn near, Islamic? If we were IN Presence of Prophet Muhammad-pbbuh , AND WE ARE IN PRESENCE OF ALLA-SWT, Why not COVER in LOOSE Clothing? The DEFIANCE and REFUSAL to DO SO ,Amazes me . "Been There, Done That", ashamed of IT, LONG AGO ! NO EXCUSES. ALLAH -swt, did NOT PUT IT IN Qur'an for Entertainment! I design & wear loose clothing, whatever jobs i have had (Even , Business, Archaeology , Machine Shop work , MEDICAL and FARMING.) & have made clothing for other sisters ! As for the lack of other wombmen of colour, nothing NEW! So where are thee Homosexuals, Since we are being Western minded and trying to PROVE WHAT ? Being LIKE 'THEM' is why we are in the 'State' we are IN. So many ISlamic styles to choose from that I REPEAT, NO NEED TO HAVE SHAPE OF BODY EXPOSED ! We ALL KNOW, clothing is NOT ALL there is to IT, BUT IT IS a START & REQUIRED BY ALLAH ! Shereen Naem:April 2, 2014 at 1:00 amgreat idea keep it up! my only concern is that we need to remember that people affiliate being muslim with being arab/ middle eastern ... this plays on that as well. let's remember that islam is a religion not a race we should make a point of that.. for example a blonde haired blue eyed named Brittney.. a red head.. african american.. asian.. Nebula Nabila:April 2, 2014 at 12:47 am"American Muslim Women" huh. Then where are the American Muslim Women (Black Americans, Latinas, Native Americans)? Very interesting choice of words for a title for it to be primarily immigrants or the children of immigrants. As if there aren't any Indigenous American Muslimahs.... As if this is an absurd question? Why is it a problem that we question this? You come to this land getting visas that our forefathers fought and died for through the civil rights movement and live in neighborhoods and get education that our efforts paved the way for. And suddenly, it is out of pocket to question why there isn't any Black, Latina, or Native American sisters presented when you are supposedly changing the way people look at Muslim women? The common misconception is that all/most Muslims are middle-eastern. Isn't that the most common stereotype? If you want to change the way people look at Muslim Women, it'd be best to enlighten them that this is not the case by featuring some non-middle eastern sisters that have been putting it down for centuries without due respect. Azzizza Johnson:April 2, 2014 at 1:32 amNebula Nabila words well spoken. The only problem is that if you are steeped in darkness its hard to guide by light. As I read some of the comments it became clearer and clearer that most miss the point and will continue to do so simply because they come from a dark place. Nebula Nabila:April 2, 2014 at 1:36 amYou are right @azzizzah! It takes humility and maturity to redress a wrong. Nana Firman:April 2, 2014 at 3:59 amI think sis.Zainab is a latina muslimah ~ however, you're rite, beloved...this needs to change...even I am having a hard time to present American muslims to my fellow Indonesians...as they wanna know the indigenous muslims in America...boy oh boy...glad that I know some cool ones, including you!!! :) :) :) Wan Rafiuddin:April 2, 2014 at 12:21 amGood..but some of them are not covering their aurah.. :-( Nhada:April 2, 2014 at 5:30 pmUh-oh! What a tragedy. My recommendation is that you just lower your gaze then, brother. Problem solved. Terri Plez:April 3, 2014 at 4:39 amMinus the sarcasm, Sis, your recommendation is spot on! Brothers have to be REAL men in this world where many of our sisters pray, fast, give charity, have faith and worship more than we do but simply have not been inspired to cover their aurah. I struggle to understand what seems like a contradiction to me but it is Allah's will. We have to be less judgmental and more loving fisabilillah. That which makes us want to judge a brother or sister, may it make us pray for them instead. I say this as a reminder to myself first and foremost. This is one of my own jihads. Shazia Keval:April 2, 2014 at 12:18 amExcellent!