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Lecture | LUCIS Lecture | Islam in North Africa

Muslims, Race and Surveillance State

Friday 18 October 2019
Open to all, reserve your free tickets
Turfmarkt 99
2511 DP The Hague

In the nearly two decades since the 9/11 event, the United States as a whole, and New York City, in particular, has escalated its state-sanctioned surveillance in the lives and activities of Muslims in the United States.

In this lecture, Dr. Ali will draw upon his extensive ethnographic research with Muslim communities in New York City and Southern California to explore the ramifications of police infiltration and monitoring on Muslim secondary and undergraduate students. Dr. Ali examines how police surveillance affected interpersonal relationships within these communities utilizing notions of panoptic gaze and governmentality. Specifically, he addresses the themes of self-censorship and self-disciplining behaviors. In this talk, he will ask how we might rethink and reconsider the practice of the ethnographic interview within the context of developing a community-responsive research methodology.

This lecture is the keynote event of the 2019 North Africa Research Program - “A Critical Return to Youth” and rounds off our program of roundtables and workshops engaging with the lived realities of Muslim youth in the aftermath of historically significant local and global political events.

About Dr. Ali Arshad:

Dr. Arshad I. Ali is an Assistant Professor of Educational Research at George Washington University’s Graduate School of Education and Human Development. He earned a master’s degree at Harvard University and a doctorate at UCLA’s Graduate School of Education and Information Studies. He has held postdoctoral fellowships at Columbia University and University College London.

Dr. Ali is an interdisciplinary scholar who studies youth culture, race, identity, and political engagement in the lives of young people. Dr. Ali has written extensively on issues relating to the cultural geography of Muslim student surveillance. He examines how economies of surveillance are scaled, both legally and ideologically, and how these scales of surveillance become manifest in the lives of Muslim youth in the United States. Dr. Ali is co-editor of the volume Education at War: The Fight for Students of Color in America's Public Schools, with Tracy Buenavista.  He has published numerous scholarly articles on Muslim youth identities and politics. Dr. Ali regularly speaks and works with colleges and universities, training students in bystander interventions, understanding the context of campus racial aggression, and how to address anti-Muslim discrimination and violence on campus.

Prior to pursuing a Ph.D., he served as the founding director of MAPS, a university based outreach and political education program working with students in South Los Angeles. He has actively been a part of youth, community and student organizing for over fifteen years.

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