I am presenting a paper today at the 2017 Annual Meeting of the CSSR, part of the broader Congress of the Federation for the Humanities and Social Science, held this year at Ryerson University in Toronto.
Title of presentation:
Decolonizing Canadian Diversity: A View from the Internal Muslim Periphery
This paper examines human diversity in Canada from a decolonial Muslim perspective. First, it
examines the thought of Ramón Grosfoguel (UC Berkeley, Ethnic Studies). He contends that
while post-colonialism represents a Eurocentric critique of Eurocentrism, decolonialism adopts
peripheral epistemologies to critique the modern/colonial world-system. Grosfoguel challenges
Muslim academics like the author of this paper to think critically from an Islamic perspective
rather than simply to think about Islam. Second, this paper applies Grosfoguel’s framework to
Canadian Muslims, situating them as one of many peripheral minorities living in the core of the
world-system. Eurocentric depictions divide Muslims into anti-modern fundamentalists and
progressive modernists. Unfortunately, many Muslims adopt these categories. Instead, this paper
argues that Canadian Muslims must reject such binaries and draw upon the dynamic, adaptable,
and pluralistic dimensions of their tradition to help build a decolonial future, in solidarity with
other peripheral communities, from far and wide.
Transdisciplinary scholar of Islam and Sufism.