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.

 
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.”

Read this story

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.”

Read this story

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.”

Read this story

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.”

Read this story

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.”

Read this story

Hanen Alkhafaji: Paving the Way for Women in STEM

“My dad has been the biggest champion behind many of my successes. I have one sister and three brothers. My dad never made us feel that our genders mattered when it came to his expectations of us. I’ve carried that with me throughout my life. I never expect any special treatment because of my gender and I haven’t come across any obstacles, so far, because of it.”

Read this story

Nazish Mir: We Are the Same

“I want us all to examine our silence, our ignorance and use our education and opportunities to speak of gender violence in the name of religion, culture and tradition.”

Read this story

Nancy Fawakhiri: Creating a Better World

“So instead I will talk about how the combination of tough, sad times, along with good, happy times have affected me and changed my perspective on life. I plan to be the change I want to see in this world.”

Read this story

America Yahya: From Lack to Leadership

“…I have a role to play in promoting a more empowering, understanding and cooperative society, beginning right in my Detroit community.”

Read this story

Naveed Stone: Making Memories and Milestones

“I guess I’ll start with family because my biggest struggle is definitely being a Bengali American coming from a traditional South Asian background. If I can make it through this struggle and see the other side of it, I’ll be in a position where I can show kids that this can be done before their parents tell them that it can’t.”

Read this story