Farid Hafez

Political Scientist, Visiting Professor of International Studies at Williams College, Senior Fellow at Bridge Initiative/Georgetown University

Hip-Hop, Malcolm X, and Muslim Activism in Austria

Here is an article published in the Journal of Austrian-American History, which analyzes how hip-hop as a social movement influenced youth with a Muslim religious background in Austria. The study examines the influence of African American activist Malcolm X, a central figure in hip-hop culture, on young people in Austria in the 1990s, and specifically his influence on the Islamic Group of Upper Austria (IG OÖ), a social-movement organization founded in 1995. The article also explores what meaning hip-hop and Malcolm X had in the genesis of this group, focusing on syncretic identity construction and how youth from different contexts utilized hip-hop and Malcolm X’s legacy to give meaning and mobility to their lives. The fusion of religion and youth culture created an alternative culture as an expression of protest against a hegemonic lifestyle and is interpreted as a struggle for recognition. Seven narrative interviews help analyze this never-before-documented history. Read full article here