(intermittently updated as I find more great resources)
a short little video (not without controversy) on the history of hijab
“Five myths about sharia“: a quick look at what shari’a is and isn’t.
“A Defender of Islamic Feminism and Critical Thought: The Father of the Modernist Movement in Egypt“: on Islam, Western influence and feminism
“The Shariah, Homosexuality & Safeguarding Each Other’s Rights in a Pluralist Society“: a fairly technical explanation of homosexuality in Islamic law (but with examples from Rousseau, Pew surveys and Keith Richards!) in the wake of the Orlando tragedy
The myth of the 1,400 year Sunni-Shia war: The ‘Sunni-Shia conflict’ narrative is misguided at best and disingenuous at worst, suggests author.
You Can’t Understand ISIS If You Don’t Know the History of Wahhabism in Saudi Arabia.
The Deobandis: The Documentary: the BBC’s Owen Bennett Jones investigates the beliefs of an influential, global Islamic movement that was founded in a small Indian town and spawned both the Taliban and AlQaeda as well as radically peaceful communities of Muslims.
This is an old article, and it completely ignores the billions and billions of dollars the United States spends annually to support shockingly brutal Arab dictators and perpetrate massive bombing campaigns that kill outright hundreds of civilians every year in the Middle East in the name of “protecting” the world from radical Islam … but it’s a pretty fair assessment of where some of the historic roots of radical Islam come from: At War With Whom? A short history of radical Islam by Jonathan Schanzer
Finally, I enjoyed this meditation by Diaa Hadid at the New York Times on the complicated emotional minefield of being a woman on Hajj in Mecca and Madina.
- What’s Right with Islam is What’s Right with America: a New Vision for Muslims and the West, by Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf
- If the Oceans Were Ink: An Unlikely Friendship and a Journey to the Heart of the Quran, by Carla Power
- Little Women of Baghlan: The Story of a Nursing School for Girls in Afghanistan, the Peace Corps, and Life Before the Taliban, by Susan Fox
- Lipstick Jihad: A Memoir of Growing Up Iranian in America and American in Iran, by Azadeh Moaveni
- Zeitoun, by Dave Eggers
- Kabul Beauty School: An American Woman Goes Behind the Veil, by Deborah Rodriguez
- The Dressmaker of Khair Khana: Five Sisters, One Remarkable Family, and the Woman Who Risked Everything to Keep Them Safe, by Gayle Tzemach Lemmon
- Persepolis: The Story of a Childhood, a graphic novel (and film) by Marjane Satrapi
And check out these recommendations from The Guardian for more books about refugees.
Humans of New York Refugee Stories: “For ten days in September , I travelled to Greece, Hungary, Croatia, and Austria to learn the stories of refugees traveling across Europe.”
Diary of the Desert: My Life in Jordan, an occasional blog by Alden Mahler Levine, Peace Corps Jordan (1999-2001)
In Their Own Words. Search stories by Peace Corps Volunteers by country.
Resettling Refugees in the United States: news, highlight stories and how you can help
Refugees are far from a burden on society. In fact, they are often eager to give back: “Syrian refugees in Edmonton step up to help Fort McMurray fire evacuees”
Compassion for Refugees Collection, from Worship Web: meaningful, inspiring resources for Unitarian Universalist (UU) worship services and personal spiritual practice.
Resources for Combating Anti-Muslim Bigotry from the Standing on the Side of Love Campaign of the Unitarian Universalist Association.