Dawn reviews “Journey into America”

The United States is a country founded on the principles of freedom, justice, and tolerance. These fundamental ideas are revisited in Journey into America, a documentary that explores American identity through the Muslim lens. Professor Akbar Ahmed, the Ibn Khaldun Chair of Islamic Studies at American University, traveled with a team of young Americans for nine months, visiting over 75 cities and 100 mosques in the United States. The result is an unprecedented effort to understand the nuanced dimensions of Islam in America, and its place within the broader American identity.

Journey into America – the companion to Professor Ahmed’s earlier study Journey into Islam: The Crisis of Globalization, which documents Ahmed’s tour of the Muslim world – is the first consolidated anthropological study on the Muslim-American community. Five Americans were chosen to be part of the team – Craig Considine (the film’s director), Madeeha Hameed, Jonathan Hayden, Frankie Martin, and Hailey Woldt. According to Ahmed, the team members were not only instrumental in conducting the necessary fieldwork, but they also acted as his ‘guides’ on the journey.

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