Islamic Heritage Museum Combats Islamophobia

If you are in Washington DC, it might be well worth the trip to visit this museum.

USA/Islamophobia: Islamic heritage museum combats Islamophobia

WASHINGTON D.C., Ramadan 8/August 8 (IINA)-Amidst talks of Islamophobia and discrimination against Muslims in the United States, a challenge to the idea that Muslims are new members of American society can be found in a recently formed Islamic Heritage Museum.

“So many times people, Americans and non-Americans, Muslims and non-Muslims, have misperceptions of Muslims saying they came from the Nation of Islam or that they came through the immigrations in the 60s and the 70s. Muslims have been a part of the American fabric since its conceptions.”

The Museum, located in Washington DC, began as a traveling exhibit called “Collections and Stories of American Muslims” which went on display in mosques and university campuses. As demand for the American Muslim historical narrative increased, co-founder and curator Amir Muhammad decided on making it a permanent feature in the nation’s capital.

“We felt there was a need being here in Washington, D.C. to have a place that the public could come to, learn about Islam, and learn about Muslims and learn about the history of Muslims in America.”

Stories begin with African Muslims like Estevanico, a servant to the Spanish explorers in the early 1500s- to Muslims living amongst Native American tribes in the eighteenth century. Many attendees were surprised to hear of these early Muslim adventures and discussed their experience at the museum.

Muhammad discussed the importance of the museum in light of rising Islamophobia.
The museum also traces modern day Muslim experiences, including civic and military participation.

As the discourse on Islamophobia increases, American Muslims continue to carry out projects like this museum in hopes of solidifying their place in American history and society.

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