Ethnic Vs. Civic Nations: A Comparison Between England, Ireland, and the United States

Jonathan Freedland’s article in the Guardian on English identity discusses the differences between the “ethno-nation” which is defined by “blood and soil” and the “civic nation” which is defined by egalitarian values and democratic institutions. These two types of competing national identities are also discussed in my PhD dissertation which focuses on the experiences of young first- and second-generation Pakistani…… Continue reading Ethnic Vs. Civic Nations: A Comparison Between England, Ireland, and the United States


Politics: Tea Party founder overlooked Muslims’ sacrifices for US

Check out the piece I just had published in the Arizona Capitol Times (the most read newspapers in Arizona for political affairs). I wrote in response to what a Tea Party leader had said about the loyalty of Muslim Americans. Read it here


Poem: A racing country

I hear you say, with a cancerous rage, ‘LET’S TAKE OUR COUNTRY BACK!’ But where are you taking it back to, who are you taking it back with, and who are you taking it back from? Why are some people joining you, while others are not? Why do some people yearn for the past, while…… Continue reading Poem: A racing country


Politics: How to spot a fascist

Dr. Lawrence Britt examined the former fascist regimes in Germany, Italy, Spain, Indonesia, and several Latin American countries and found 14 defining characteristics common to each.  Considering the saliency of several current issues, such as Congressman King’s ‘radical Muslim’ hearings to the influence of the media and rampant corruption and militarism, one has to wonder…… Continue reading Politics: How to spot a fascist

Fieldwork · Religion

Religification of Pakistani-American youth

Note: Ameena Ghaffar-Kucher’s research here is quite similar to my own.  I want to share with you her important findings. One of Ameena Ghaffar-Kucher’s explications examines a cultural production process called religification, in which religious affiliation, rather than race or ethnicity, has become the core category of identity for working class Pakistani-American youth in the United…… Continue reading Religification of Pakistani-American youth

Fieldwork · Religion

Thick and thin religion

Kavirah (2010) argues that the growing religiosity in many parts of the world is quite different from our traditional understanding of religion (in his writing, he refers to rising Hindu identity and nationalism).  He argues that we need to distinguish between ‘thick and thin religion’.  Thick religion encompasses traditional rituals, practices, and beliefs, whereas thin…… Continue reading Thick and thin religion


Love, country, and border

The love of one’s country is a splendid thing.  But why should love stop at the border? – Pablo Casals


My diary: 1 year, 100 cities, 75 mosques, and one question…

This archive documents my writings from the ‘Journey into America’ book and documentary project.  The writings here are my own personal opinions and don’t necessarily reflect the overall message of ‘Journey into America’.  Most of these entires are ‘notes in the field’, but you may also find published articles.  In addition, included here are short…… Continue reading My diary: 1 year, 100 cities, 75 mosques, and one question…