Our Stories

Personal stories can be a powerful catalyst for change – challenging stereotypes, building bridges, and inspiring action. In a country as diverse and complex as the United States, the identities of Muslim Americans remain layered and contested. We all have stories to tell: stories that deserve to be collected, conserved, and celebrated.

“Muslim American Journeys” is a MALA program produced in partnership with NPR’s StoryCorps and the Library of Congress, providing a platform for Americans of Muslim heritage to share their individual stories. By sharing a diverse range of narratives and experiences, “Journeys” aims to document oral history, inspire pride, and celebrate individuality. Every story recorded is officially archived in the Library of Congress, and outstanding stories are featured on National Public Radio.

Browse the collection of individuals’ stories below. If you would like to participate in “Muslim American Journeys,” here is information on how to submit your story and apply to participate in a recording session.

 
Baktash Ahadi: Serving the Greater Good

“Serving America in the country of my birth proved to be one of the proudest and most valuable experiences of my life. I had the honor of serving alongside brave American and Afghan soldiers who made the ultimate sacrifice to bring peace to Afghanistan. I have since made it my moral obligation to continue to serve people and causes that matter most to me.”

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Laleh Bakhtiar: I Follow the Religion of Love

“Not having considered going back to college, it suddenly felt as if that was exactly what I needed to do. I enrolled in graduate school. I was to earn two MAs, one in Philosophy with a Concentration in Religious Studies and one in Counseling Psychology. This, then led to a Ph.D. in Educational Psychology which I completed in 1992 at the age of fifty-five.”

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Lama Al Jarallah: Finding Self-Love and Perseverance

Lama Al Jarallah shares her journey to finding a community in America that “nourished and encouraged” her.  In her professional life, she is dedicated to building an environment of inclusive cultural diversity, personal growth, efficiency, and communication.   I was born in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, where I grew up until my early teens. After a […]

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Zeina Mohammed: The Anxiety of Identity

Zeina Mohammed is a member of the 2018-19 MALA Young Leaders Fellowship. Fellows participate in monthly digital seminars, dinner discussions, and other MALA events. As part of the program, Fellows reflect on their multiple layers of identities – as daughters, sons, professionals, athletes, and so much more – and share those reflections into the MALA […]

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Rahima Dosani: Finding My Voice

Rahima Dosani is a member of the 2018-19 MALA Young Leaders Fellowship. Fellows participate in monthly digital seminars, dinner discussions, and other MALA events. As part of the program, Fellows reflect on their multiple layers of identities – as daughters, sons, professionals, athletes, and so much more – and share those reflections into the MALA […]

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Isra Omar: Reconciling the past with the present

Isra Omar is a member of the 2018-19 MALA Young Leaders Fellowship. Fellows participate in monthly digital seminars, dinner discussions, and other MALA events. As part of the program, Fellows reflect on their multiple layers of identities – as daughters, sons, professionals, athletes, and so much more – and share those reflections into the MALA […]

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Farhana Shafi: The Day Everything Changed

Farhana Shafi is a member of the 2018-19 MALA Young Leaders Fellowship. Fellows participate in monthly digital seminars, dinner discussions, and other MALA events. As part of the program, Fellows reflect on their multiple layers of identities – as daughters, sons, professionals, athletes, and so much more – and share those reflections into the MALA […]

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Amal Amaskane: Beyond the Box ‘Other’

Amal Amaskane is a member of the 2018-19 MALA Young Leaders Fellowship. Fellows participate in monthly digital seminars, dinner discussions, and other MALA events. As part of the program, Fellows reflect on their multiple layers of identities – as daughters, sons, professionals, athletes, and so much more – and share those reflections into the MALA […]

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Fuad Faruque: Defining Myself

“Aside from the addition of the political label to my identity, I’d like to think the identities of being a Muslim and an American evolved over the years too. While I approach my faith in a more reform/secular way, I still celebrate it, while acknowledging it is certainly an important part of my identity.”

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Farida Karim: Amyn’s Sister

Farida Karim is a member of the 2018-19 MALA Young Leaders Fellowship. Fellows participate in monthly digital seminars, dinner discussions, and other MALA events. As part of the program, Fellows reflect on their multiple layers of identities – as daughters, sons, professionals, athletes, and so much more – and share those reflections into the MALA […]

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