I will be hosting The State of the Ummah II a Muslim blogging carnival. Started by Umm Yasmin last year, the idea of the carnival is to allow Muslim bloggers to showcase their best writing. It is hoped that the Carnival will be picked up by other bloggers and so "travel" across the blogosphere. At the moment there is no fixed interval, although I would suggest two to four weekly intervals at different blogs. If you're interested in picking this up after me, please contact Umm Yasmin.
Last year's carnival was an open affair with no particular theme, but this year I have decided on a theme: Beyond hatred and apologia: contemporary Muslim responses to sacrilegious treatments of Islam.
The Danish "cartoon controversy" has become a huge story. The publication of those cartoons have been blown out of all proportion, but the issues raised are real enough. Of course, this isn't the first time such a "clash" has occurred. For this reason I've decided on a topic which revolves around Muslim responses to productions (novels, plays, visual arts) that are deemed sacrilegious. The emphasis is on responses to the arts, because equally offensive material is produced every year under the guise of news, history or politics, but there are no such widespread angry response (these might be considered worse because they are being passed off as "fact"). As the theme of the Carnival suggests, I am looking for those posts which engage with the issues, not merely suggest they stand for "free speech" or "against Islamophobia". Posts needn't be limited to the recent Danish controversy, although I suspect most of them will be about those 'toons (which, as an individual who grew up reading comics and watching animation, I have to say are aesthetically unpleasant. That's twice the insult!).
And now for the small print (thanks to Umm Yasmin for letting me lift bits from her weblog):
What is a blogging carnival?
A blogging carnival is a regular or semi-regular forum where bloggers nominate posts, typically centred around a particular theme or fulfilling certain requirements, to a specified blog (either hosted permanently, or floating around the blogosphere). When the due date is up, the Carnival host then collects all, or the best of, the posts and creates an uber-post of links for Carnival members and interested visitors to surf.
How does it work?
Send your nomination to the following email address: thestateoftheummah [at] yahoo [dot] co [dot] uk
Include the following information in the email:
- The name of your blog with a link (with a hyperlink).
- The title of your submitted post and a link to the post (with a hyperlink).
- A couple of sentences to describe your submitted post (which may be edited by the host).
- Optional (for host and blogger): a trackback link.
An example will help:
The due date for submitting a post is: 11:59PM, 6 March 2006, Greenwich Mean Time. (Click here to convert to your own timezone.)
What are the rules?
The rules are as follows:
The State of the Ummah is open to all bloggers who hold to the basic Muslim credal statement: la illaha illa Allah, Muhammad arrasul Allah, “there is no god but God, Muhammad is the Messenger of God”. A non-Muslim blogger who writes an exceptionally good post about Islam and/or the Muslim world, which is not antithetical to Islam or Muslims, may submit their post for consideration.
The point of The State of the Ummah is to give readers a taste of the state of Muslim blogging today, what informs Muslims, what Muslims believe, what Muslim life is like etc. For the second Carnival, the topic is: Beyond hatred and apologia: contemporary Muslim responses to sacrilegious treatments of Islam.
Bloggers can sumbit one post from an individual blog. You can nominate a post from your own and/or other blogs. (I might include posts which are themselves collections of other posts).
The nominated posts must be submitted to the given email address before the deadline. Posts submitted after the dealine might be considered, but please don't complain if they do not appear on the Carnival!
Go get nominating.