The Arab American National Museum wants to become more than “a building filled with stuff.” That’s why it’s recording the stories of everyday people as part of an on-going project.
The museum just released three interviews it did in conjunction with Storycorps, about profiling and stereotyping after 9-11. The interviews are posted on the website arabstereotypes.org. But the museum regularly posts other recordings and podcasts on i-tunes & YouTube.
Matthew Stiffler is a researcher at the museum. He says one way to counter Islamaphobia is when people who don’t know Arab Americans or Muslim Americans listen to these recordings. “Listening to stories and having these personal connections is the best way to overcome this sort of bias and bigotry that is rampant right now.”
This summer the museum plans to record Arab American kids talking about how the Arab Spring has affected their lives and their ideas about democracy.