Black American Muslim Women Disrupting the Beauty Hierarchy
Arab & Muslim Experiences in the U.S. - Fall 2018 Event
In this talk, Dr. Wheeler provides a history of the contemporary Afro-Islamic fashion industry in the United States, beginning with the Nation of Islam, to show how Black Muslim women have used fashion to challenge Arab-centrism in Islam and white supremacist beauty standards. Dr. Wheeler will conclude by exploring the structural barriers that prevent Black Muslim models and designers from breaking into the mainstream fashion industry in the United States. Dr. Wheeler argues that much like mainstream media, the fashion industry contributes to the racialization of Islam in which Islam is read as a “Brown” religion, thus marginalizing Black Muslims.
Kayla Renée Wheeler, Ph.D. is an Assistant Professor of African American Studies and Digital Studies at Grand Valley State University. She is the curator of the Black Islam Syllabus and the author of Mapping Malcolm’s Boston: Exploring the City that Made Malcolm X.
Sponsored by: the Provost’s Office; the CAHSS Dean’s Office; the Depts. of American Studies, Gender +Women’s Studies, History, and Africana Studies; the Religious Studies Program; and the Women’s Center.
For questions and additional information, please contact: Dr. Mejdulene Shomali firstname.lastname@example.org.
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