About the Conference

With Islamophobia becoming a household term over the past decade, it is incumbent on scholars and practitioners to explore the historical origins and global connections of this phenomenon to fully understand and confront its current iterations. Convened by members of the Georgetown University in Qatar faculty, this conference brings together a diverse collection of professionals, academics, government officials, artists, and students to explore the global, historical, theological, and political dimensions that drive practices of Islamophobia. We also aim to provide a public platform for engagement on this important topic and invite you to join the conversation.

Keynote Speaker

Ambassador Ebrahim Rasool

Founder of the World for All Foundation

Ebrahim Rasool is a renowned South African activist and diplomat known for his faith-driven social and political involvement. A founder of The Call of Islam, Rasool has dedicated his life to fostering a deeper understanding of Islam and promoting interfaith dialogue, especially in the face of rising Islamophobia. His early activism in the anti-apartheid struggle laid the foundation for his later diplomatic roles, including serving as South Africa’s Ambassador to the United States. Rasool has received multiple awards for his visionary leadership, including from the World Congress of Muslim Philanthropists. Through his World for All Foundation, he continues to work on establishing global cooperative relations between various faiths and cultures. His life has been shaped by a lifelong commitment to justice and co-existence through his active participation in the anti-apartheid struggle and leadership in the United Democratic Front (UDF) and the African National Congress (ANC).


Saturday, September 30, 2023


8:00 – 9:00AM

Opening Remarks

9:00 – 9:05AM

Edward J. Kolla, Associate Professor of History and Faculty Chairperson, Georgetown University in Qatar

Opening Keynote Address

9:05 – 10:00AM

Ambassador Ebrahim Rasool, World for All Foundation

Panel 1:  Intellectual Roots of Islamophobia

10:15 – 12:00PM

Chair: Abdullah Al-Arian, Georgetown University Qatar
Andrew Hammond, University of Oxford
Anne Norton, University of Pennsylvania
Firat Oruc, Georgetown University Qatar
Salman Sayyid, University of Leeds


12:00 – 1:30PM

Panel 2: Islamophobia and Empire

1:30 – 3:15PM

Chair: Karine Walther, Georgetown University Qatar
Oli Charbonneau, University of Glasgow
Hafsa Kanjwal, Lafayette College
Deepa Kumar, Rutgers University
Nader Hashemi, Georgetown University

Panel 3: Islamophobia and Racialization

3:30 – 5:15PM

Chair: Anne-Sophie Pratte, Georgetown University Qatar
Sahar Aziz, Rutgers University
Haiyun Ma, Frostburg State University
Nahed Samour, Humboldt University
Stephen Sheehi, College of William & Mary

Sunday, October 1, 2023


8:00 – 9:00AM

Panel 4: Constructing the Narrative: Islamophobia and the Media

9:00 – 10:45AM

Chair: Jamal Elshayyal, Al Jazeera Media Network
Spencer Ackerman, The Nation
Laila Al-Arian, Aljazeera Network
Mohamad Elmasry, Doha Institute for Graduate Studies
Sana Saeed, AJ+

Panel 5: Qatar, the World Cup and Islamophobia


Chair: Danyel Reiche, Georgetown University Qatar
Shireen Ahmad,  Multi-platform Sports Journalist
Thomas Ross Griffin, Qatar University
Tony Karon, Al Jazeera Media Network
Craig LaMay, Northwestern University Qatar



Panel 6: Islamophobia and the Global War on Terror


Chair: Nadya Sbaiti, Georgetown University Qatar
Lisa Bhungalia, Kent State University
Haim Bresheeth-Zabner, SOAS University of London
Carol W.N. Fadda, Syracuse University
Zaynab Quadri & Thomas Simsarian, Ohio State University

Closing Roundtable Discussion


Chair: Firat Oruc, Georgetown University Qatar
Yasin Aktay, Turkish Academy of Science (TÜBA)
His Excellency Dr. Khalid Fahad Al-Khater, Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Qatar
John Esposito, Georgetown University
Afreen Fatima, Jawaharlal Nehru University
Dalia Mogahed, Institute for Social Policy and Understanding
Ambassador Ebrahim Rasool, World for All Foundation

Closing Remarks


Safwan Masri, Dean of Georgetown University Qatar