The Wesleyan Refugee Project hosted a panel discussion on “Islamophobia in the Age of Trump” on Dec. 7 in Usdan Univesity Center. Speakers included Peter Gottschalk, professor of religion, professor of science in society, director of the Office of Faculty Career Development; Patricia Rodriguez Mosquera, associate professor of psychology, associate professor of feminist, gender and sexuality studies; and Muslim Chaplain Sami Aziz.
Gottschalk is an expert on Hindu-Muslim relations in contemporary India and American perceptions of Muslims and Islam. He teaches courses on Muslims and/in of the West, Hindu Lives, Islam and Muslum Cultures and Religion, Science and Empire. During the event, Gottschalk discussed “The Secret History of American Islamophobia” and spoke on anti-Muslim sentiment in America. Western antagonism toward both Muslims and Islamic traditions, he said, long predates the arrival of Europeans in the Americas and the changes in this antipathy need to be understood in order to address today’s issues.
Rodriguez Mosquera spoke on “Emotions in Response to Societal Devaluation” and presented an outline of her current research and findings on American Muslims and British Muslims. Rodriguez Mosquera is an expert on culture and ethnicity, honor, emotions, insult and devaluation. At Wesleyan, she teaches Research Methods on Emotion, Culture in Psychology and Advance Research on Culture and Emotion.
Chaplain Sami Aziz spoke on “Islamophobia and Our Denial of It.” He discussed the Anti-Sharia Bill, refugees, and the potential for genocide. Chaplain Aziz has studied various classical Islamic sciences in his studies within the United States and abroad.
The event was moderated by Caroline Kravitz ’19, at left, and Eunes Harun ’20, at right.
Several Wesleyan students and community members attended the panel discussion. The Muslim Student’s Association, the Office of Religious and Spiritual Life, the Muslim Studies Certificate, the Government Department, and the Albritton Center for the Study of Public Life co-sponsored the event. (Photos by Rebecca Goldfarb Terry ’19)