Exhibition, speakers highlight Islamic Awareness Week
An exhibitions, movies, speakers and discussion will highlight the University’s first-ever Islamic Awareness Week, being held this week. The week is funded through a Feinstone Grant from the Office of Multicultural Affairs. Other sponsors are the Muslim Students Association and the Islamic Law Society.
“The need for such an event was perceived more than a year ago, because Muslim students are aware that our non-Muslim colleagues do not have very good knowledge of Islam in general,” says Shazia Beg, one of the week’s organizers. “The events of Sept. 11 only increased the need for a greater interaction between the students of different religions on campus.”
An exhibition called “Discover the Beauty of Islam” is on display from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Feb. 11 and 12 in 302 Schine Student Center. In this exhibition, Muslim students from a number of different countries will display items from their countries to represent Islamic cultures around the globe. The exhibition will include prayer rugs from Turkey, Pakistan, India and Saudi Arabia; Qurans in different languages; woodwork; papier mache from Kashmir; rugs from Turkey and Kashmir; and such other items as shawls, hijabs (head scarves worn by Muslim women), Tasbeeh (prayer beads) and calligraphy.
At 7 p.m. Feb. 11 in 137 Sims Hall, the PBS documentary “Empire of Faith” will be shown. Refreshments will be served.
At 7 p.m. Feb. 12 in 107 Hall of Languages, Imam Siraj Wahhaj will speak on “Islam and America: Opportunities and Challenges.” Wahhaj is imam of Masjid Taqwa mosque in New York City, and is known among Muslims in North America as a dynamic speaker. He led a community-based anti-drug campaign in the Bedford-Stuyvesant area of Brooklyn, in which he staked drug houses for 40 days and nights during winter, forcing the closure of 15 drug houses. He is the first imam to deliver a Muslim prayer in the U.S. House of Representatives.
At 7 p.m. Feb. 13 in 105 Link Hall, the movie “Malcolm X” by Spike Lee will be shown. Refreshments will be served.
At 6 p.m. Feb. 14 in 500 Hall of Languages, “Islamversations,” an informal conversation on current issues in the Muslim world, will be held. Refreshments will be served.
At 6 p.m. Feb. 15 in 207 Hall of Languages, Ermin Sinanovic will speak on “The Concept of Religion in Islam.” Sinanovic is a doctoral student in political science at the Maxwell School. He is originally from Bosnia-Herzegovina and earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in Islamic Studies from the International Islamic University Malaysia and the International Institute of Islamic Thought and Civilization, respectively.