Wednesday, October 21, 2020 12:00 PM to 1:00 PM
Zoom Virtual Event
This talk will begin from a provocative quote on Twitter made by Johana Bhuiyan in response to a user who stated a growing Muslim population in the United States is much more concerning than Covid-19: “Sweetie everyone’s already washing their hands five+ times a day, covering their face, not shaking hands + avoiding bars. Not only are we already here, you’re all Muslim. Salam brother.” Dr. Rinker uses this quote as a basis to explore how the guidance provided at the local and national levels to slow the spread of the coronavirus intersects with Islamic principles and practices concerning health and the human body; however, she calls attention to the cultural and historical dimensions of these principles thus demonstrating that they are not monolithic. Moreover, Bhuiyan’s tweet in response to the user’s comment about the threat of the growing Muslim population prompts us to analyze the junctures of Islamophobia and racism, which have been particularly heightened during the pandemic. Careful not to equate “Muslim” with race, Dr. Rinker also wants to think through how anti-Muslim bigotry may be analyzed through the framework of racism.
Cortney Hughes Rinker is the Director of the Global Affairs Program and Associate Professor in the Department of Sociology and Anthropology at George Mason University. Her latest book, Actively Dying: The Creation of Muslim Identities through End-of-Life Care in the United States, is forthcoming with Routledge.