Alice in Arabia

On February 26th, MPAC announced a partnership with Disney/ABC Television Group to offer a one-day workshop to identify and empower American Muslims interested in pursuing a career in screenwriting for television. The announcement came just days after the release of Salaam, Love and the conclusion of Columbia University’s symposium The Muslim Protagonist: a synthesis of journeys. It was heartening to see momentum growing around nurturing and empowering American Muslims who aspired to be writers and storytellers.

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An open letter to Bill Maher from a Muslim American

The problem isn’t Islam. It’s your movement to demonize Islam in the liberal left.

Hey there, Bill. You hate religion. You particularly hate Islam. We get it. Your liberal bigotry against Muslims and Islam is no secret. For a while now I’ve just avoided watching your show, which kind of stinks because for many years I was a great fan and really loved it.

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Allahu Akbar: Homeland’s season finale is a shocker

Warning: This post contains spoilers about the season three finale of “Homeland.”
You would think Allahu Akbar was synonymous with “Death to America!” if you watched the final two pulse-pounding episodes of Showtime’s Homeland season three. A multitude of Allahu Akbars serve as the backdrop in the horrific public hanging scene of last night’s season finale, “The Star.”

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“Parenthood”: The agony and the ecstasy

In the course of parenting my two children, I have often found myself saying and doing things reminiscent of what my parents said to me: “You won’t even think to clean your room until I tell you!” The strange déjà vu experience translates over to the deeper conversations, too. “God doesn’t appreciate your being wasteful. Please finish your food.” I guess we are all in many ways the same — despite my kids growing up years after my own childhood, they play the same antics and end up hearing the same rebukes.

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The role of women and social class in Pakistan’s “Humsafar”

No less than seven people told me that I had to watch the television show Humsafar. My Pakistani-American cousins and friends, who have so overlooked the cultural exports of their motherland in the past, seem to have attached themselves to this particular drama. Indeed, it has taken the Urdu-speaking world by storm. Not only are Pakistanis obsessed with it, but also with the help of YouTube, it has gained tremendous popularity in Canada, the United Kingdom, and the United States.

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TLC’s new eight-part series, “All-American Muslim,” is set to air this Sunday and follows the daily lives of five American Muslim families in Dearborn, Michigan, the country’s largest Arab-American enclave. I spoke with Shadia Amen and Jeff McDermott, whose road to marriage is featured on the show. Shadia is an Arab-American Muslim and her family would like for Jeff to convert from Catholicism to Islam in order for the union to be valid in their faith.

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