Rizwan has met with hundreds of young Canadian Muslims while working on the «Muslim Youth Canada Project», and he introduces us to some of these young people at a workshop. We later meet his family, get a glimpse into what it was like for him to grow up as a Muslim in Canada, and discuss radicalization, the media, and young Muslims’ relationship with Canadian security agencies.
1 - Meeting a Thousand Muslims
Rizwan talks about his project that made him meet young Canadian Muslims from all walks of life. In this episode, Rizwan goes to Brock University in Southern Ontario to hold a workshop about the Canadian Muslim identity.
2 - A Desi Family in Ajax
Rizwan introduces his family and we get a glimpse into what it was like for him to grow up Muslim. He also gives us a tour at the mosque he attended when he was young.
3 - Don’t Judge a Book by its Cover?
Rizwan discusses some of the issues that come along with wearing silwar kameez, a cultural attire that sometimes attracts attention especially in a post 9-11 context. He then introduces us to his close friend Mischa, a secular Jew who he often has intense conversations with.
Rizwan Mohammad’s parents were born in India, educated in Pakistan and immigrated to Canada in the late 1970s. Born in Toronto, Rizwan grew up speaking Urdu and English in a Muslim household.
He studied Arabic, Persian and Islamic History at the University of Toronto and Islamic Philosophy at McGill University in Montreal. From May 2009 to March 2011, Rizwan coordinated the Muslim Youth Canada Project. This was a youth-led national service learning initiative of the Canadian Council of Muslim Women (CCMW ccmw.com).
The project was to develop a co-ordinated strategy aimed at strengthening plural identities and increasing civic engagement of Canadian Muslim youth. Rizwan is currently writing a book about his travels across Canada and his experiences with Canadian Muslim youth while working as a Research Associate at Carleton University’s Centre for the Study of Islam in Ottawa. He opposes the reign of quantity, forgets anything anywhere, and ties his shoelaces very slowly.