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.

 
Aateka and Marwa Samara: You Are What You Wear

“We do love the Arab culture, but we have let go some of the old cultural aspects because we did not feel that they suited us anymore, and one example of that is the feminine role in the Arab culture.”

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Iqra Shafiq: Growing Up and From Within

“You don’t have to be from the same back ground to be called family. You can have nothing in common and still be intact with people who are completely different from you.”

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Samreen Ahsan: Holy or Greedy?

“I’m a proud Muslim and a firm believer in God and there is no doubt in the fact that I feel complete with this identity. Being a Muslim was not a choice but a way of living in the society I was raised.”

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Shahab Siavash: Pen, Paper and Passion

“I believe that when done successfully, typography can transcend its craft and become a true art, and this is a feeling that has been expressed through Persian art. I believe that talent holds no barriers. ”

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Zainab Naziri: Leaps of Faith

“I won’t grow when things are easy; I will grow when things are challenging.”

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Fariba Nawa: Boycotting for Change

“Studies show that gender segregation not only lowers the status of women — it’s the women serving the men at these parties I attended — but it has obvious adverse effects on their work and romantic relationships.”

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Serena Sans: The Green Girl

“We de-cluttered and donated what we don’t use and didn’t buy more. All of the changes benefit us but also the planet at large. Sometimes people tell me that they are unsure about where to start being more environmentally or health-conscious.”

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Khitam “Khit” Masoud: BLESSON

“I wanted to show my mother, sisters and all the women that they deserve to be loved the way they want to be. They deserve to be treated the way they want to be. By showing the world that I can leave home at 16, finish high school while working two jobs, living on my own and getting into college to make something of myself without a man doing it for me, was my only goal.”

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Farhana Rahman: You Sure You’re Not a Jew?

“Extremists are a sect of their own that bring shame, they go against our values and destroy our name. There are more Muslim Zionists and supporters than most even know of. They are educated, know better, and are full of love.”

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Stacy Parker Le Melle: Silence Is Not an Option…Working with Afghan Women Writers

“We had just one agenda: proving women’s voices mattered. When it comes to our lives, silence is not an option.”

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