Ghazala Mehboob Irshad finds comfort in the eye of storms. Whether it be on Twitter, in Egypt during the 'Arab Spring', or the ultra-fast creative hub that is New York. The first time I was acquainted with Ghazala was through her social media presence. Here was a politically astute brown girl with poignant cultural commentary and a talent for elevating the voices of the marginalized. I got excited. Ghazala was making it happen, using her voice, creating her own platform and by doing so--encouraging me to create my own. It is hard to develop your voice when you grew up seeing so little of yourself reflected back to you in media and elsewhere. We often see ourselves through lenses that were not made by us. Ghazala's striving toward her passion, her voice and daring visibility challenges this erasure. She makes the air a little easier to breathe for women like myself.
Ghazala was nice enough to host me in Bushwick, show me her favorite street art spots and feed me some amazing Ethiopian food in early April. These are some of the images that transpired.
Muslim Women Persist