Hadia Mubarak has felt like an outsider here in America, where she was born, and in the Middle East, where her parents were born.
She writes that she didn’t feel comfortable in her American Muslim identity until she went to college and visited a nearby mosque. There she felt part of something universal.
“My American Muslim identity, like that of many others, is one that cannot be contained within geographic borders,” Mubarak wrote for Azizah magazine in 2004.
“It does not begin nor end on a stretch of land, for an identity lives within the heart and the consciousness. I am at home in any land or place that reminds me what it means to be insan (human).”
Mubarak is senior researcher at Georgetown’s Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal Center for Muslim Christian Understanding. She will share her American Muslim perspective at an April 19 symposium on “What it means to be Muslim in America.’
Mubarak was born in New Jersey but grew up in Panama City, Fla. Her parents are from Syria and Jordan.
She is the first woman and first native-born American to be elected president to lead the national Muslim Student Association. She helped organize the Brookings Institute’s U.S.-Islamic World Forum in Doha, Qatar, in 2004.
She is a 2003 graduate of Florida State University where she majored in international affairs and English creative writing with a minor in Middle Eastern Studies. She has a Master’s degree in contemporary Arab studies from Georgetown and is pursuing a PhD in Islamic studies.
By David Waters |
April 12, 2007; 1:41 PM ET
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