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Critical Currents in Islam Media Roundup (May 1-21)

The Citadel at Amman, Jordan. Image by Mr. Littlehand via Flikr. The Citadel at Amman, Jordan. Image by Mr. Littlehand via Flikr.

[This is a roundup of news articles and other materials circulating about Islam and reflects a wide variety of opinions and approaches. It does not reflect the views of the Critical Currents in Islam page or of Jadaliyya. You may send your own recommendations for inclusion in each week's roundup to by Saturday night of every week.]

May 15-21

Who better to lecture Muslims than Islam expert Donald Trump?, The Guardian
David Shariatmadari writes about the contradictions present in Donald Trump’s request that Muslim leaders combat extremism despite his own extreme positions such as favoring Saudi Arabia over Iran. 
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The Myth of the Muslim World, The Chronicle of Higher Education
Asma Asfaruddin reviews Cemil Aydın’s new book The Idea of the Muslim World with close attention to some of the premodern predecessors to the modern conundrums that Aydin addresses. 
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Trump will speak to Muslim leaders in Saudi Arabia about radical IslamThe Hill
On Donald Trump’s first trip abroad, he will speak to Muslim leaders in Saudi Arabia about promoting moderate Islam and fighting terrorist groups. 
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‘I think Islam hates us’: A timeline of Trump’s comments about Islam and Muslims, The Washington Post
During Trump’s visit to Saudi Arabia, journalists have compiled a timeline of Trump’s comments on Islam. 
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Trump summons Muslim nations to confront ‘Islamic terror of all kinds’, The Washington Post
While in Saudi Arabia, Trump asked Muslim leaders to unite against terrorism, while avoiding the phrase “radical Islamic terror.” 
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'Drive Them Out': Trump Addresses Muslim Leaders on Terrorism, The Atlantic
Donald Trump’s tone has changed since his campaign trail speeches. Does this change in tone reflect a change in policy towards a more pragmatic approach? 
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The Self-Taught Philosopher: How a 900-year-old Arabic tale inspired the Enlightenment, CBC Radio
Lenn Goodman interviews Avner Ben-Zaken about Ibn Tufayl’s short story Hayy ibn Yaqzan, which was immensely important in philosophical circles for centuries. 
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Pew Research, The New Republic
Jeff Sharlet reviews Frances Fitzgerald’s The Evangelicals providing a brief history of the “evangelical vote” and the “Christian Right” to shed light on Donald Trump’s victory with white evangelical voters. 
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New Islamic institute prioritizes outreach, education, The Washington Post
Imam Hassan Qazwini and the Islamic Institute of America plan to open a outreach center in Dearborn, Michigan. This center and its leadership hope to use this center to for education and interfaith engagement. 
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Ramadan 2017: Fasting hours around the world, Al Jazeera
Fasting times around the world vary. Aljazeera has listed various cities across the globe and the length of time they will be fasting. 
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US VP warns of ISIL 'genocide' against Christians, Al Jazeera
Vice President Mike Pence spoke about a “genocide” against Christians at the first World Summit in Defense of Persecuted Christians in Washington DC. Critics accuse Pence of downplaying discrimination against non-Christian minorities such as the Yazidis and the Rohingya. 
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Thomas Jefferson’s Qur’an, The Immanent Frame
The Immanent Frame hosts a series focused on re-reading Denise Spellberg’s Thomas Jefferson’s Qur’an in the political climate of 2017. 
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A State of suspicion: Counter-radicalization in Norway, The Immanent Frame
Sindre Bangstad discusses radicalization and counter-radicalization discourses in contemporary Norway as right-wing parties are on the rise globally. 
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May 8-14

Christian Governor in Indonesia Found Guilty of Blasphemy Against Islam, The New York Times
The former governor of Jakarta, Basuki Tjahaja Purnama, was found guilty of blasphemy for insulting the Quran. His dismissal and guilty verdict was largely praised by his political opponents.
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Which gateway did Prophet Mohammed choose to takeover Mecca?, Al Arabiya
Al Arabiya details the Prophet Muhammad’s journey back to Mecca and the gate he used to enter the city victoriously.
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Syria says up to 5,000 Chinese Uighurs fighting in militant groups, Al Arabiya
The Syrian ambassador to China has claimed that 5,000 Uighurs are fighting in the Syria conflict. Bashar al-Assad and the Syrian government seeks to woo Chinese investment back to Syria.
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The Council for American-Islamic Relations has released a report which addresses concerns about violations of civil rights of American Muslims.
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There Was A Huge Increase In Anti-Muslim Incidents As The US Election Heated Up, Buzzfeed
Hate crimes against Muslim-Americans are up by almost 600% since 2014. A report detailing this information was compiled by the Council for American-Islamic Relations.
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American Muslims report “unusual surge” in visits from the FBI in 2016, VICE News
Vice News discusses the CAIR report highlighting some of the key issues addressed such as: increases in reports of visitations of Muslims by FBI agents.
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Judges Weigh Trump’s ‘Muslim Ban’ Remarks at Appeals Court Hearing, The New York Times
Federal judges are debating whether the larger context of Trump’s executive order, or “Muslim Ban,” should be taken into account and used to block the order.
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Religious Belief and National Belonging in Central and Eastern Europe, PEW Research Center
Pew Research has produced new data showing transformations in religious practice in Central and Eastern Europe after the fall of the Soviet Union.
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One group aims to give Muslim women in France a voice, PRI
Lallab, a magazine in France designed to amplify Muslim women’s voices, has published a new edition which foregrounds responses to the burkini ban and the lack of Muslim women’s perspective in the national debate.
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Why were 101 Uzbeks killed in the Netherlands in 1942?, BBC News
101, mostly Uzbek soldiers, were captured and killed in the Netherlands on their way to fight as Soviet soldiers against the Nazis.
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U.S. judge in D.C. signals readiness to become third to order halt to revised Trump travel ban, The Washington Post
U.S. judge in D.C. signals readiness to become third to order halt to revised Trump travel ban.
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Eight things to know about Islam in Germany, The Local
The Local shares eight facts about German Muslims, who have had a rich history in the country since the 1600s.
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Safeguarding Islam's past for future generations, BBC
A recent conference in Bahrain brought together scholars on Islamic archeology to discuss how to preserve Islamic heritage for future generations.
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Thousands of Mother’s Day Cards Sent to Muslim, Immigrant Moms, NBC
Forward Together, a national organization that works with community leaders for social change, started “Mamas Day.” This day celebrates moms that aren’t very visible in traditional cards and media. This year their focus was “lifting up single moms, queer families, incarcerated parents and immigrant mamas.”
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May 1-7

Why Is The Nation Of Islam Classified As A Hate Group?, Rhode Island Public Radio
Zain Abdullah, an associate professor of religion and society and Islamic studies at Temple University, discusses the history of the Nation of Islam and why it is labeled as a hate group in the U.S.
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How Two Mississippi College Students Fell in Love and Decided to Join a Terrorist Group, The Atlantic
The Atlantic shares the story of how two college students tried to join the Islamic State and discusses how easy it is to find information about extremist groups.
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Indonesians Seek to Export a Modernized Vision of Islam, The New York Times
Nahdlatul Ulama, the largest mass Islamic organization in the world, started by young Muslims in Indonesia seeks to reinterpret Islamic law dating from the Middle Ages in ways that conform to 21st-century norms.
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Nigeria Chibok girls: Eighty-two freed by Boko Haram, BBC News
Boko Haram has released 82 girls after nearly 30 years of being held captive. Nearly 100 of the girls taken are still being held captive and the Nigerian government says it will do anything within its power to get them back.
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Sub-Saharan Africa experienced largest increase in religious restrictions in 2015, PEW Research Center
Although Sub-Saharan Africa had fewer religious restrictions in 2015 than many other parts of the world, it experienced a larger increase that year than any other region. This is due to government harassment of religious groups rising from being reported in 25 countries in 2014 and rising to 37 countries in 2015.
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I Am Not Your Muslim, NPR
Nesrine Malik discusses the idea of a “Muslim identity matrix” which means a scale of “how Muslim you look or act.” 
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Why catwalk Hijabs are upsetting some Muslim women, BBC News
Many popular brands such as Pespi, H&M, and Nike have featured women in Hijabs in recent advertisements and many Muslim women argue that wearing a hijab is something sacred to them that is being undermined by commercialism.
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What’s behind controversial new initiative from Egyptian Islamist group?, Al Monitor
A political wing of the Gamaa Islamiya has launched the “Save Sinai Initiative,” which aims at stopping violence in the Sinai Peninsula.
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‘We must protect our country’: extremist Buddhists target Mandalay’s Muslims, The Guardian
Ma Ba Tha, or the the Committee to Protect Race and Religion, is an ultra-nationalist Buddhist organization that for years has spread anti-Muslim rhetoric around Myanmar. The group argues that Muslims are “trying to overwhelm the country,” so Ma Ba Tha must fight to protect it.
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It’s Not This Muslim Comedian’s Job to Open Your Mind, The New York Times
Zahra Noorbakhsh speaks about navigating the post-election comedy world as a Muslim, Iranian-American comedian.
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Paris main mosque says Macron election gives hope to French Muslims, Reuters
La Grande Mosquée de Paris released a statement in response to Macron election win, saying “it is a clear sign of hope to French Muslims that they can live in harmony and respect of French values.”
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Iran is seeking 'to control Islamic world', says Saudi Arabian prince, The Guardian
Saudi Arabia’s deputy crown prince has rejected attempts at dialogue with Iran concerning current events. He has cited claims that Iran seeks to “control the Islamic world” as evidence for his rejection.
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Kaaba’s doors part of 466 rare Arabian pieces to be shown in Seoul exhibition, Al Arabiya
Seoul’s National Museum welcomes the “Roads of Arabia” exhibit with doors and other rare pieces from the Kaaba on display.
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Why are so many Muslims suddenly visiting Japan?, The South China Morning Post
Japan has experienced a recent influx of Muslim immigrants which many believe is because the Japanese government has relaxed visa requirements, the growth in low-cost airlines serving Japan and lastly the ease with which Muslim travellers can have their specific needs met.
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Labour sacks candidate under investigation for 'calling for the eradication of Islam' on Twitter, The Telegraph
Trevor Merralls, a Labour candidate in Old Bexley and Sidcup, was removed as a candidate because of his offensive tweets calling for “the eradication of Islam.”
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ISIS mufti tells Al Arabiya how he met ‘introverted’ Baghdadi in US prison, Al Arabiya
Hussam Naji was captured in Iraq in 2014. Naji details how he met the ISIS leader, what they talked about, and why Baghdadi split with other extremist groups such as al-Qaeda.
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Australia’s grand mufti wins defamation case over News Corp articles, The Guardian
Australia’s grand mufti, Dr. Ibrahim Abu Mohamed, has won a defamation case over a News Corp article that used racist tropes to  suggest that he had failed to condemn acts of terror.
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Why Pope Francis' approach to Islam breaks the mold of Benedict and previous popes, America Magazine
Pope Francis has made it his business to try to build bridges with the Muslim world with the energy of a missionary as opposed to his predecessor Pope Benedict, who tended to deliver his messages about Islam from a distance.

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Robert Mugabe Thankful for Absence of Islam in ‘Highly Developed’ Zimbabwe, Newsweek
Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe has blamed Islam for the violence that many African countries are experiencing right now and argued that Zimbabwe is the second most advanced country in Africa, after South Africa, and this is in part due to their small Muslim population (around 1 percent of the population). 
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Islamic and Arab art institute opening in New York aims to challenge stereotypes,The Guardian
Sheikh Mohammad Rashid al-Thani, a member of the Qatari royal family, has opened the Institute of Arab and Islamic Art in NYC in order to challenge stereotypes and fill the gap in the art community.
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Islamophobia in the USA, Al Jazeera
Al Jazeera investigates what the caused anti-Islamic sentiments to rise in the United States in a compelling video.
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What’s it like inside Islam’s holiest site, the Kaaba?, Al Arabiya
Al Arabiya English shows a glimpse of what’s inside the Kaaba in Mecca.
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If you want to know about Muslim women's rights, ask Muslim women, The Guardian
Susan Carland says it’s time to start letting Muslim women speak for themselves on issues that affect them.
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