USC Dornsife College Of Letters Arts and Sciences

University of Southern California

Archive

Archive

Ayahuasca-naut: A Zen Student’s Experiment with Shamanic Medicine

This piece originally appeared in Boom California. A hallucinogenic brew called ayahuasca is having a heyday in the United States. Rolling Stone, Fusion, VICE and other trend-spotting news outlets have posted stories about spiritual adventurers tripping …

The Kingdom of God and American Exceptionalism

Does America have a special God-given role in the world? In meetings with both evangelical and religiously unaffiliated young adults in Los Angeles, I have seen a shift in the understanding of …

The Other Muslim Fringe: Muslim Activism in Europe

CRCC’s Nick Street had a fellowship from the Pulitzer Center for Crisis Reporting to explore young Muslims in Europe working to create a space for themselves. Watch this video to hear about what …

The Invisible Muslims: Reporting about Islam in America

This piece originally appeared on Nieman Reports. Days after last year’s terrorist attack on a public services center in San Bernardino, California, Kristen Stangas was standing amid a cluster of reporters outside …

Doing It All For Her: A Lesbian Muslim Hip-Hop Singer on Art and Activism

This article originally appeared on The Huffington Post. “I could’ve been like the dude in Orlando,” said Jaheda Choudhury-Potter, a self-described “geeky dark-skinned lesbian Muslim” who fronts a queer hip-hop band in …

Mapping the New Landscape of Religion in Los Feliz

This article originally appeared in BOOM: A Journal of California. Mt. Hollywood Congregational Church was in trouble. Its congregation had become too small to sustain the decaying Los Feliz building that had …

How Young Muslim Activists in Sweden Fight Radicalization

This article originally appeared in the Los Angeles Times. When Salahuddin Barakat founded the Islam Academy in 2013, he located it on the edge of Rosengard, a predominantly Muslim neighborhood that has …

How Korea’s “Nones” Differ from Religiously Unaffiliated Americans

Looking at a simple pie chart depicting current patterns of affiliation in Los Angeles and Seoul—the comparison case in CRCC’s Religious Competition and Creative Innovation (RCCI) project—the cities seem remarkably similar. About …

President Obama Lifts up Young Muslim Activists, Including AMCLI Alumni

Just before President Obama made his public remarks at the Islamic Society of Baltimore this week–his first visit to a mosque as President–he met with a dozen Muslim leaders from across the …

Why Terrorists Can’t Win in World’s Largest Muslim City

A few minutes after newswires began to buzz with reports of a terrorist attack in Indonesia, I received a text from a friend at the Los Angeles Times. “My Starbucks in Jakarta …

Muslims Seek a Delicate Balance in a Secular Europe

This story was originally published by the Los Angeles Times as part of a reporting project supported by the Pulitzer Center for Crisis Reporting. A light rain was falling as young men …

Charting the Future of Religion

This post originally appeared in Caring Magazine. At the start of a typical evening at Monday Night Mission, volunteers wiped down tables on a terrace outside a Burger King near Our Lady …

Marginal Muslims: Questioning Religion in Indonesia

This post also appeared on Huffington Post Religion. “If Islam is a religion of peace, why are people so violent?” That rhetorical question brought me up short. I wasn’t watching Pamela Geller’s …

The Gay Sex Worker Who Defied Sharia Law in Banda Aceh to Organize

This post originally appeared on Global Post. JAKARTA, Indonesia — Faisal Riza started as a sex worker in one of the riskiest possible places for any kind of transgressive behavior: Aceh, a …

How a Pentecostal Law Professor Has Helped Reshape Nigerian Politics

This post also appeared on The Washington Post Acts of Faith blog. I met Yemi Osinbajo, Nigeria’s vice president-elect, two years ago, during the annual convening of the mammoth Holy Ghost Congress …

Building the Future of Religion, One Burrito at a Time: Service Groups and Religious “Nones”

On a recent Thursday night, a group of about 75 volunteers for the Burrito Project commandeered the kitchen and fellowship hall at the Church of the Epiphany to make 1,000 burritos to …

The “Nones” Are Alright

This article originally appeared on Al Jazeera America. This article argues that far from becoming morally rudderless secular citizens, many religiously unaffiliated people are seeking ways of forming meaning and identity as …

First All-female Mosque Opens in Los Angeles

This post originally appeared on Al Jazeera America. The first women-only mosque in the United States opened its doors in Los Angeles on Friday with an inaugural jummah, or prayer, by Edina …

Hampers of hope in Harbor City

This post originally appeared on Al Jazeera America. HARBOR CITY, Calif. — From the Pacific Coast Highway exit off the freeway in Harbor City, it is impossible to miss the towering exhaust stacks …

How Muslim Civic Activism Helped Pass California’s Prop 47

This post originally appeared on Religion Dispatches. California mostly defied the rightward national trend in this week’s midterm elections. The victory of Proposition 47, for example, makes California the first state in the …