About the Blog/ger

This blog focuses broadly on the ways American culture, Islamic cultures, and subsets of those cultures categorize and treat their “others”, those outsiders or constituent minorities and subcultures against which social groups define themselves. It will also reflect on the perspectives of those “others” across history and geography. Among the blog’s recurring topics are Islam and Muslims in America; aliens and fantastic creatures in imaginative literature; the history of heresy and polemics; red state / blue state duality; and gender minorities in American and Islamic cultures.

Patrick taught religion and history at liberal arts colleges for ten years. He specializes in the study of Islam, social scientific approaches to religion, and the medieval history of the Middle East and Central Asia. He is transitioning to a career in public policy and advocacy.

Patrick considers himself a thoughtful, non-ideological liberal who values intellectual and religious pluralism and unabashedly advocates multiculturalism.

Patrick is also a total geek – a consumer of science fiction, fantasy, and other imaginative literature. He thinks he has a great sense of humor, but his students surely consider him more of a goofball. His in-class references to The Lord of the Rings, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, and Battlestar Galactica either go over or under their heads. He can’t tell for sure.

The building in the logo is the Islam Khoja Mosque in Khiva, Uzbekistan. The eyeball belongs to Patrick’s cat, who has given permission to use his eye’s image in exchange for a free pass on foot attacks when Patrick works on the blog. Patrick also finds it strange to refer to himself in the third person.

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