Dialogues Across Difference: Dalia Mogahed hosts panel on anti-Islamophobia

Mogahed is the former director of Research of Institute for Social Policy and Understanding

On Mar. 18, Dalia Mogahed, former director of Research of Institute for Social Policy and Understanding, held the third panel of MIT’s Dialogues Across Differences: Building Community at MIT speaker series at the Schwartzman College of Computing. Mogahed is a Muslim studies scholar whose research primarily focuses on Islamophobia in the US.

Mogahed’s panel was titled “Islamophobia: A Threat to All”. The panel consisted of her talk followed by a question and answer session with the audience moderated by Lily Tsai, Ford Professor of Political Science and former faculty chair at MIT. President Sally Kornbluth also attended the panel and facilitated the talk.

Mogahed discussed the pervasive issue of Islamophobia in the US and stated that Muslims are more likely to experience religious discrimination in institutional settings than those with other religions, citing data from a survey conducted by the Research of Institute for Social Policy and Understanding.

Moreover, she explained that Islamophobia is not only a threat to Muslims but also to society as a whole, as it encourages societal divisions and incites fear and discriminatory sentiments against vulnerable groups. Mogahed said that a society with less unity compromises the safety of everyone in it.

Mogahed also spoke about the role of media coverage in contributing to Islamophobia in the US via the dissemination of misinformation about Muslim communities. Finally, she discussed some recommendations to address Islamophobia in the US. She stated that anti-Islamophobia mandates should be incorporated into organizational agendas and emphasized spreading greater awareness of Islamophobia and the discrimination Muslims face in the US.

The final Dialogues Across Differences event will be held on Apr. 18 in the Schwarzman College of Computing, where Murad Idris, Associate Professor of political science at the University of Michigan, will speak. His panel is titled: “What Hinges on Anti-Palestinian Racism.” 

More information about this upcoming event can be found here.