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Literati Bookstore is pleased to bring Ambassador Omar Saif Ghobash to Ann Arbor in support of his book, Letters to a Young Muslim, and delighted to announce that he'll be joined in conversation by the Arab American National Museum's David Serio. This event will take place in the Rackham Amphitheater and is free and open to the public. Join us!
In a series of personal letters to his sons, Omar Saif Ghobash offers a short and highly readable manifesto that tackles our current global crisis with the training of an experienced diplomat and the personal responsibility of a father. Today's young Muslims will be tomorrow's leaders, and yet too many are vulnerable to extremist propaganda that seems omnipresent in our technological age. The burning question, Ghobash argues, is how moderate Muslims can unite to find a voice that is true to Islam while actively and productively engaging in the modern world. What does it mean to be a good Muslim?
What is the concept of a good life? And is it acceptable to stand up and openly condemn those who take the Islamic faith and twist it to suit their own misguided political agendas? In taking a hard look at these seemingly simple questions, Ghobash encourages his sons to face issues others insist are not relevant, not applicable, or may even be Islamophobic. These letters serve as a clear-eyed inspiration for the next generation of Muslims to understand how to be faithful to their religion and still navigate through the complexities of today's world. They also reveal an intimate glimpse into a world many are unfamiliar with and offer to provide an understanding of the everyday struggles Muslims face around the globe.
Omar Saif Ghobash is the Ambassador of the United Arab Emirates to Russia. In addition to his post in Moscow, Ambassador Ghobash sponsors the Saif Ghobash-Banipal Prize for Arabic Literary Translation and founded the International Prize for Arabic Fiction in collaboration with the Booker Prize in London. Ambassador Ghobash studied law at Oxford and mathematics at the University of London.
David Serio is an Education and Public Programming Specialist at the Arab American National Museum (AANM). He holds a M.A. in Near Eastern Studies and Arabic from Wayne State University. Mr. Serio joined the AANM in January of 2011, initially as an AmeriCorps, later being hired as a full-time Educator and Public Programmer. As an Educator and Public Programmer, Mr. Serio has conducted educational presentations and workshops throughout the Mid-West. Mr. Serio also helps in the planning and implementation of youth programs and cultural events. Mr. Serio is also the Curator of the Arab Film Festival and manages all of the AANM’s film programming, both at the AANM and at offsite locations around the world. Mr. Serio is also the Volunteer Coordinator and responsible with growing and managing the volunteer program. Mr. Serio continues to implement educational and cultural programming to audiences far and wide.