Muslim Girl: A Coming of Age
At nine years old, Amani Al-Khatahtbeh watched from her home in New Jersey as two planes crashed into the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001. That same year, she heard her first racial slur. At age eleven, when the United States had begun to invade Iraq and the television was flooded with anti-Muslim commentary, Amani felt overwhelmed with feelings of intense alienation from American society. At thirteen, her family took a trip to her father's native homeland of Jordan, and Amani experienced firsthand a culture built on the true peaceful nature of Islam in its purest form, not the Islamic stereotypes she heard on the news. Inspired by her trip, Amani created a website called Muslim Girl. Muslim Girl: A Coming of Age is the extraordinary account of Amani's journey through adolescence, from the Islamophobia she's faced on a daily basis, to the website she launched that became a cultural phenomenon. While dispelling the myth that a headscarf is a signifier for radicalism or oppression, she shares both her own personal accounts and anecdotes from the "sisterhood" of writers that serve as her editorial team at Muslim Girl. Amani's honest, urgent message is fresh, timely, and a deeply necessary counterpoint to the current rhetoric about the Middle East.
Amani Al-Khatahtbeh is the founder and editor-in-chief of MuslimGirl.com, the #1 Muslim women's blog in the United States. She regularly provides commentary on social, cultural, and political issues on outlets like CNN, Al Jazeera, and the BBC, and has been featured in The New York Times, The Guardian, and made Forbes "30 Under 30" list. She is a frequent speaker at conferences and events addressing issues pertaining to women, Islam, and the Arab world. You can follow her on Facebook and Twitter at @XOAmani and read more on MuslimGirl.com.