On Tuesday, March 26, Marywood will host "Becoming the Muslim Protagonist: Changing the Narrative by Telling Our Stories"—a lecture by Wajahat Ali, a noted Muslim playwright, essayist, and humorist. The event will be held in the Latour Room, Nazareth Student Center, from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. It is free and open to the public.
Mr. Ali's essays and commentaries have appeared in The Guardian, Salon, The Huffington Post, The Washington Post, and other media outlets. In addition, he is the lead author of the investigative report Fear, Inc.: The Roots of the Islamophobia Network in America, published by the Center for American Progress. Mr. Ali has consulted the U.S. State Department, McSweeney's, U.C. Berkeley and other organizations regarding Muslim issues.
Erkan Acar, Ph.D., is the academic advisor for international students and a member of Marywood's Interfaith and Community Service Task Force. When asked to talk about the significance of this event and ethnic issues in general, Dr. Acar emphasized the role of storytelling and its impact on shaping the conversation about Muslim-related issues.
"My goal is to let people have a good time," Dr. Acar said. "It is also important to clear up any cultural misconceptions about the Muslim community. The audience can engage and ask questions, too, if they want."
Dr. Acar also hopes that by hosting and coordinating this and similar events the community will gain a better understanding of Muslims and ethnic issues.