Addressing Islamophobia: Dispelling Myths to Break down Barriers
The post-9/11 era in the U.S. has exposed a significant degree of prejudice and bigotry towards Muslim people. More recently, many 2016 Presidential candidates have exacerbated broad vilification of Muslims to serve political agendas. In 2012, a violent hate-motivated attack on a Sikh temple in Wisconsin highlighted the fact that Islamophobia is not just an issue that only impacts Muslims in America. Meanwhile, underscored by the horrific murders of three UNC students, there continues to be widespread racial profiling, hate crimes and bullying throughout the country. This program will benefit participants interested in learning more about Islam and Islamophobia, providing needed context to bridge divides.
Hip Hop Activism: Building Grassroots Social Justice Movements using Hip Hop Culture
Hip Hop is one of the most powerful cultural expressions in the world today. It is often utilized as a voice for marginalized people across numerous cultural contexts. As a result, the potential to build grassroots activist movements through the use of Hip Hop is enormous. A number of Hip Hop activist organizations have emerged to support efforts to build social movements through Hip Hop culture. As these organization continue to grow, they enact unique and dynamic models for change that connects campuses and communities to broad-based movements committed to social justice for marginalized people around the world. This session will be an introduction to Hip Hop activism exploring participants’ ability to connect their respective talents to a growing movement for social justice.
Intercultural Leadership Development
People of Color have consistently been bombarded with Eurocentric conceptions of Leadership that focus on positional and individual achievement. These approaches to leadership typically reinforce the message that People of Color should assimilate and give up their own ways of being and living in the world in order to advance and succeed. What happens when we begin to conceive of leadership in a fundamentally different way that accounts for the intercultural skills that People of Color have as a result of shifting and adapting between multiple contexts? Is it possible to engage leadership development in a less Eurocentric way that elevates decentralized collectivism and intercultural competency skills as implicit in effective 21st Century leadership? This program will reframe the whole discussion on leadership in order to guide individuals on a path that honors our ancestors and values all of who we are as diverse and dynamic human beings.
Workshop on Allyhood and Campus Hate/Bias Bystander Intervention
Acts of hate, bias and discrimination occur on college campuses every day. As a community, such acts undermine the sense of inclusion that various members feel while engaging and participating in it. However, as members of a campus community, we are not helpless bystanders to these actions and realities that occur. Given this, many wonder what can be done to address such incidents when they occur. How can we address such incidents when we witness them occur? This interactive workshop will encourage participants to explore and engage ‘bystander intervention’ and ‘allyhood’. What does it mean to be ally? What actions should we take when we are bystander to acts of hate, bias and/or discrimination? What obstacles and barriers need to be overcome in order to develop effective actions that can interrupt these acts as they occur? In the workshop, participants will develop strategies that can be effective and help overcome fears that may exist in making interventions.
Dismantling the ‘U.S. versus International’ Dichotomy: Creating Synergy between Intercultural and Diversity/Social Justice Approaches
Intercultural approaches are often adopted by those in organizations who engage in international and ‘global’ efforts while Diversity and Social Justice approaches tend to be viewed as only applicable in U.S. contexts. As the trend of 'Globalizing’ Business, Higher Education and other sectors rapidly accelerates, there are many missed opportunities due to the lack of synthesis of the two approaches. This dichotomy often prevents us from understanding the relationship between local and global factors that impact our ability to engage constituencies holistically. For example, by engaging issues related to immigration and more specifically undocumented people in only one of these approaches, it prevents us from understanding the relationship between local and global factors impacting diverse contextual realities around the world. In addition, the integration of these approaches better highlights the historical context and inequities created from power dynamics that must be considered in order to effectively navigate intercultural realities in our world today.
Hip Hop Pedagogy
As commitment to quality education continues to lag in urban environments; educators continue to seek alternative methods to reach students who often come to classrooms with significant challenges. Hip Hop continues to be a powerful cultural force in the lives of urban youth and presenting opportunities to utilize unique pedagogies and methodologies to reach students. In addition, Hip Hop also presents opportunities in Higher Education to create diverse spaces that strengthen the overall educational development of students who often struggle to find comfortable cultural spaces on campus. This session will introduce participants to the fast-growing world of Hip Hop Education.
Building Multicultural Student Coalitions
Students of Color continue to face immense challenges on the campuses of Predominantly White Institutions. As students constantly seek to organize to address their challenges on campus, often times divides within and across communities prevent their voices from heard. This session will equip students with the skills and tools needed to build coalitions that can legitimize issues and concerns that need to be addressed.
Islam and Hip Hop
When one explores the world of Hip Hop artists in America, it isn’t hard to notice the disproportionate representations of artists who profess their relationship to Islam. Artists like Mos Def, Jurassic 5, A Tribe Called Quest, Brother Ali and Lupe Fiasco are some of the numerous artists that identify as Muslim. Why is there such a huge overlap between Hip Hop and Islam? In exploring the history of Islam in Black America, the pervasiveness of Muslims in Hip Hop becomes less surprising. This session will unveil a historical continuum of Islam in relationship to the Black oral tradition of rhythmic storytelling. Starting in West Africa, the continuum extends through the Middle Passage later manifesting in the 20th Century through figures like Muhammad Ali and Malcolm X and continues on in modern Hip Hop culture.
Yoga, Henna and Sweatshops: Cultural Appropriation, Exploitation and the Commodification of South Asian Culture
As South Asian cultural and spiritual practices continue to proliferate throughout Western society, the consumption of the sacred has been transformed into billion dollar industries. Interest in Yoga, for example, has translated into numerous studios and ancillary businesses that profit from the fervor. Most of these businesses appropriate the practice and sell products that are owned by those with little connection to South Asian cultural and social realities. Meanwhile, many products including the clothing, apparel and mats are produced by sweatshops and exploitive labor practices in South Asia and other impoverished societies around the world. This session will expose participants the dangers of cultural appropriation and the perils of exploitation inherent in the consumption of South Asian culture.