ISLAMOPHOBIA AND ‘OTHERING’: NARRATIVES OF INTERNATIONAL HIJABI MUSLIM WOMEN IN HIGHER EDUCATION

2019-05-15T16:31:09Z (GMT) by Nastaran Karimi
Historically, various minority groups have faced multiple forms of prejudice and discrimination. The sources of such attitudes are mainly ignorance about these groups. One such group is Muslims living in western countries. The fear and dread of Muslims and Islam has deep historical roots; however, these attitudes escalated after the September 11 tragedy. After September 11, Muslims became the headlines of news and Americans were exposed to distorted images of Muslims in the media. This misrepresentation of Muslims in the media led to yet another form of xenophobia, which resulted in ‘othering’ Muslims. In schools and universities, the story was not different. In the following study, I discuss the ‘othering’ of 6 international hijabi Muslim women studying at a Midwestern University in light of the Islamophobic tendencies developed after September 11. I create narratives of these experiences to understand how hijabi Muslim women make sense of their experiences in relation to the larger sociopolitical discourse. These narratives contribute to the larger effort of creating an equitable educational experience for students from all backgrounds.