We gathered on a rainy evening downstairs of Lapis, which is called Lapop: a cultural salon & intellectual sanctuary, where the community can come together and participate in conversations about art, literature, and culture. Plus it's decor is breathtaking and the coffee is served just right.
We had a very small group as the rain detoured a few of our ladies from getting out to Adams Morgan. Hati from Sospeso came through, pregnant as can be, to set up small bites for us. It's always a treat to have her around and her food is the best for catering events (this isn't a plug, she really is good)! Also thrilled to have a special soda made for us by Lapop which was a combination of lemonade, cardamom, and lavender. It was so refreshing!
What does a Muslim woman look like? Where does she come from and could she be like me or are we vastly different? The oppressed Muslim woman who needs saving is a common trope, but what is her own story and how can we connect with Muslim women's’ authentic voice and self-conceptualization? Below are their words and a snip of their perspective on the topic that evening. Thanks to Nicole for leading this conversation and bringing such a powerful question to the circle. It was powerful to learn and break so many stereotypes and assumptions.
A little about our discussion leader: Nicole is interested in an intellectual and inspirational approach to faith and articulates a practical theology with a sensibility for social, gender, and ethical justice. Nicole is also committed to inter and intra-faith work, cultivating our shared humanity and bringing people together for the common good. She continues to study Arabic with the Fawakih Institute since 2012 and as of Spring 2016 will be finishing up her Master’s degree in Islamic Studies and Christian-Muslim Relations at Hartford Seminary and has been accepted into the Ph.D. program in the Religion Department at Boston University.