Medina Tenour Whiteman stands at the margins of whiteness and Islam. An Anglo-American born to Sufi converts, she feels perennially out of place—not fully at home in Western or Muslim cultures. In this week’s episode, Rabbi Elana Zaiman talks with writer and poet Medina Tenour Whiteman about her searingly honest memoir, The Invisible Muslim: Journeys Through Whiteness and Islam. They discuss being religious women, and Whiteman contemplates what it means to be an invisible Muslim, examining the pernicious effects of white Muslim privilege. They explore what Muslim identity can mean the world over. They invite us to a conversation about a life-long search for belonging, and the joys and crises of inhabiting more than one identity. Catch this nuanced episode—and stay in the know about what’s going on in this moment at Town Hall Seattle.
Medina Tenour Whiteman is a writer, poet, translator, and musician. She is the author of a collection of poetry, Love is a Traveller and We Are It’s Path, and Huma’s Travel Guide to Islamic Spain. She lives near Granada, Spain with her husband and three children.
Elana Zaiman is a rabbi, chaplain, and author, the first woman rabbi from a family spanning six generations of rabbis. Her book, The Forever Letter: Writing What We Believe for Those We Love, was published in 2017. Her essays, nonfictions, and fictions have been published in numerous publications, and served for nine years as the Ethics and Spirituality columnist for Liv Fun magazine.
Presented by Town Hall Seattle.