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Islamophobia in Schools: A Photo Essay

–By Insha Bint Bashir

Artist Note: Creative photography needs a lot of props and a proper set which newcomers in the field of photography like me do not have access to. If there was no lockdown and I could go outside and have a model, it would have been to my satisfaction.

I tried capturing some of the catchy instances from Nazia Erum’s book Mothering a Muslim to show how Islamophobia exists in Indian schools and what Indian Muslim kids in school often face due to stigmatisation of their religious identity and largely due to the polarisation of the mainstream politics.

Artist Bio

Insha Bint Bashir recently graduated as a Young India Fellow from Ashoka University. She did her bachelors and master’s in political science from Aligarh Muslim University. She is interested in studying problems around gender and politics and is currently pursuing master’s in liberal studies under the department of Anthropology and Pol. Science at Ashoka University. She spends most of her time researching, reading and writing and understanding student activism. Insha is an occasional poet and calls herself a child of conflict. She tries to weave her pain of growing as a Kashmiri through metaphors in her poems.

Most of her childhood days, stuck indoors because of recurrent curfews and shutdowns she became a photography enthusiast, often making photos in black and white and sepia tone to depict the grim reality of her life and neighbourhood under the shades of conflict. Insha tries to freelance and paves way for her emotions through creative photography. She believes to carry three dangerous identities with her, a Kashmiri, a woman and a Muslim.

Published by The Delek Archives

This project intends to archive instances of identity and religion-based discrimination in schools. It will map policies, surveys, curriculum evaluation and self-reflections; with a larger goal to providing a vision for justice, equity and inclusivity in school education.

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