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UW Bothell’s American Muslim Research Initiative to host speaker series

The University of Washington Bothell’s American Muslim Research Initiative will host its first in a public speaker series.

The event is at 5 p.m. March 31 at the North Creek Events Center at the UW Bothell Campus. The talk, "Covering Islam on Main Street: How foreign crises have become a domestic story," will be given by renown Middle East expert Larry Pintak.

Pintak is founding dean of Washington State University’s Edward Murrow School of Journalism and co-editor of Islam for Journalists: A Primer on Covering Muslim Communities in the U.S. The former CBS News Middle East correspondent has written extensively on America’s relationship with the Muslim world.

The talk is open to the public and will be moderated by Karam Dana, Ph.D., director of the American Muslim Research Initiative at UW Bothell. Dana is an assistant professor at the University of Washington Bothell, and has lectured extensively on Middle East Politics and Muslims in the U.S. He is also a contributor to Islam for Journalists.The American Muslim Research Initiative utilizes a data-driven approach to address questions related to American Muslims as a diaspora and a local community in the United States.

Dana says the focus of the initiative is two-fold: domestic and international.

"The domestic is focused on studying the American Muslim community’s acculturation and incorporation into U.S. society, their political behavior, and role in U.S. society and politics, as a minority group,” he said. “The international focus examines the transnational impact of Islam on a global level, and how Islam inside and outside of the U.S. affects the lives of American Muslims, and vice versa, with specific attention paid to U.S. foreign policy potential implications.”

Dana says the talk will provide a deeper understanding of the Muslim community in America.

“American Muslims are an integral part of the American experience, yet the community has been repeatedly seen in a negative light,” he said. “This is the first of many events that will address myths surrounding Islam and Muslims in the U.S., while keeping in mind that other religious and ethnic communities have traditionally undergone similar scrutinies.Together as a community we can dispel myths, and look for more acceptance of religious and ethnic minorities throughout the U.S.”

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