Frequently Ask Questions

Can I volunteer for the Center?

Yes, please email and get in touch with us at hello@iphobiacenter.org.  We can provide resume credit for high school and college students as internships for operational support for our live events and projects.

I am a scholar and want to have my research on islamophobia published. How can you help me?

Respond to our call for papers for our conferences, where your work can be marked for presentation and subsequent publication.  Special reports and projects for mass specialized and targeted circulation can also be published on our networks provided the correct qualifications and expertise are met.

How useful is academic research on islamophobia?

Our reports are sent to congressional members for speaking engagements and we provide data points for speakers.  Our research has also been entered into the congressional record. Outside of legislation our political allies are able to advocate on behalf of the community using academically sound research. This aids in moving away from reactionary to proactive policy making.

Isn’t Islamophobia is just a new made up word?

The use of the term Islamophobia in both French and English can be traced back to the early 20th century (with earlier versions like Mussulmanophobia and Turcophobia appearing in the late 19th century). Interestingly, the term racism itself emerged in the 1930s, making it a more recent addition compared to Islamophobia.
The key consideration is the purpose a word serves. Islamophobia helps us recognize and address cruelties and injustices directed at expressions of Muslim identity, whether real or perceived, that might otherwise go unnoticed and unchallenged.

Are there some things that are Islamophobic in all circumstances?

No, context is essential. A useful guideline is to substitute the word 'Muslim' in a statement with another minority and assess how it appears and sounds. Context is not solely about private intentions; it's a matter of public and social factors, taking into account what is said or done, who is saying or doing it, and the consequences. The risk of Islamophobia increases when the perpetrator holds a position of authority, influence, and has a history of making inflammatory statements, such as politicians, individuals writing for national media, or those with a substantial social media following. Discussions on comparable forms of racism also indicate that the risk of Islamophobia varies based on whether the perpetrators identify as Muslim and how they treat expressions of Muslim identity.

I am critical of all religions, including Islam; does that make me an Islamophobe?

Merely being critical of Islam or religions doesn't automatically categorize you as an Islamophobe. The label applies if you use language associated with Islamophobia to express your views. There exists a well-established but adaptable set of memes, references, phrases, and practices through which, in a given context, Muslim identity is expressed in an Islamophobic manner.

By Jasmine Zine

Since the 9/11 attacks, Muslims have been more openly vilified and targeted. Statistics Canada data on police-reported hate crimes between 2009 and 2019 revealed a steady increase of anti-Muslim incidents across the country.

White nationalist terror in Canada has specifically targeted Canadian Muslims. There have been unprecedented attacks against Muslims first at a mosque in Québec City on January 29, 2017, killing six men after evening prayers and then four years later, on June 6, 2021, in London, Ontario, where four members of a Muslim family were intentionally mowed down by a truck and killed.

Within this context, understanding how Islamophobia manifests and is purveyed is more important than ever. In addition to the impact that state policies and systemic anti-Muslim racism have on perpetuating a climate of Islamophobic animus, Islamophobic networks operate in orchestrated ways to support and sustain an industry of hate.

The “Islamophobia industry” is comprised of media outlets; political figures; far-right, White nationalist groups; Islamophobia influencers and ideologues, pro-Israel, fringe-right groups; Muslim dissidents, think tanks, security experts, and the donors who fund their campaigns. These individuals, groups, and institutions comprise a network that supports and engages in activities that demonize and marginalize Islam and Muslims in Canada.

The objectives of this study were to (a) map the political, ideological, institutional, and economic networks that foment Islamophobic fear and moral panic in Canada; (b) examine strategies employed by Islamophobia agents and highlight the ties among players within the Islamophobia industry; (c) create profiles of key public figures, media outlets, and organizations who produce and distribute Islamophobic ideologies and propaganda, and (d) identify the dominant Islamophobic discourses that circulate through these networks.

A social network analysis was performed to examine relevant media articles, websites, public commentary, and videos from Islamophobia influencers and ideologues, organizations, media outlets, and other anti-Muslim special-interest groups that promote Islamophobic campaigns.


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