A new report from the British Council’s Bridging Voices project on the Muslim Atlantic shares insights on how Muslim communities in the United States and the United Kingdom are responding to debates on gender, race, and marginality. The authors recount both convergent and divergent experiences across transatlantic contexts and highlight the persistent intersectionality between the themes of gender, race, and securitization.
With deep social and political polarization in both the United States and Europe—and against a backdrop of rising anti-Muslim sentiment, heightened politics around race, and the #BlackLivesMatter and #MeToo movements—how are Muslim communities across the Atlantic responding to renewed debates on gender, race, and marginality?
This report—the second of two produced by the British Council Bridging Voices project on ‘The Muslim Atlantic’—represents an analytic synthesis and presentation of insights arising from two workshops organized by the project in 2019 and 2020. The first of these convenings focused on the question of how debates and discussions about gender compare across Muslim communities in the United Kingdom and the United States. The second workshop explored Muslim experiences of race and securitization in transatlantic perspective.
This report is a companion to our July 2019 report Mapping the Muslim Atlantic. Where the first text sought to survey and trace the evolution of various forms of transnational Muslim engagement between the UK and the US, this second report focuses on identifying strategies for community and civil society engagement around the issues and challenges identified by the two workshops. Both reports take inspiration from the work of Paul Gilroy, a London-based scholar whose seminal book The Black Atlantic was published a quarter-century ago. Gilroy wrote of the ‘Black Atlantic’ as a cultural space forged out of a collective memory of the transatlantic slave trade. The ‘Muslim Atlantic’ is an analogous idea, placing focus on Muslim shared experiences of securitization and cultural racism across diverse transatlantic contexts.