ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Listening Hard

Amidst growing Islamophobia in Europe, the only hope is in educating your own and “the other,” in discovering the rich past of coexistence, in dialogue, and exploring common identities.

Hatidza Mehmedovic walks through a sea of white tombstones and raises her hands in prayer. This is her pilgrimage—her own Mecca, she says. Mehmedovic recounts the dead—her husband, eldest son Azmir, younger son Almir, her two brothers and over 50 other family members—all killed in one single night. Twenty years later, this is what remains—the silent, symmetrical tombstones, and the haunting memories of the 1995 Srebrenica genocide.

Mehmedovic’s story is one of the stoic moments in the documentary Journey into Europe ( that underline the need to understand the complex relationship of the Muslim world in Europe. The 120-minute film by Muslim scholar and former diplomat, Ambassador Akbar Ahmed, seeks to explore several layers of this Muslim–European identity. The film digs out the rich past of Islam in Europe, it unveils the challenges of the present, and in some heart-warming moments, it offers glimpses of hope that humanity will prevail.

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