Mehnaz M Afridi

Mehnaz M Afridi

Assistant Professor

Department : Religious Studies

Email :

Phone : 718-862-7284

Office : MGL 406


PHD, University of South Africa
MA, Syracuse University


  • Holocaust
  • Pakistan
  • Israel
  • Interreligious Identity
  • Diaspora and Transnational Studies
  • Post-genocide Identity
  • Feminist post-colonial theory

Professional Experience

Visiting Professor at Loyola Marymount University, Los Angeles
Visiting Professor, Antioch University, Los Angeles
Director, Public Relations, International Education and Welfare Society
Education and literacy first!

Board Member
Raoul Wallenberg Institute of Ethics
Muslim-Jewish Dialogue

Levantine Cultural Center, Los Angeles
Board of Advisors,

Arava Institute, North America & Israel
Board of Directors, 2006-present

Wise, Woman’s Initiative,
Spirituality and Equity, Steering committee, 2006-present

Publications & Professional Activities

Global Perspectives on Orhan Pamuks’s Literature: Existentialism and Politics, Ed. Mehnaz M. Afridi & David M. Buyze, (Palgrave McMillan, 2012)

Shoah through Muslim Eyes, (White Cloud Press, forthcoming)

Conference Papers:

  • Islamic and Jewish Relations: Park 51?  Temple Menorah, Palos Verdes, November 2010
  • Change through Collaboration, Wise Conference, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia August 2009
  • Muslimah Monologues, Wilshire Temple, Los Angeles, 2008
  • Ancient and Alive: Contemporary Readings of Sacred Texts, Columbia University, 2008
  • Women and Islam: Literature, Images and Politics, University of Vermont, 2008
  • Mahfouz, Pamuk, and Rushdie: Modern Muslim Identity and Literature, ACLA, Long Beach, CA, 2008
  • Islam and the Future of Muslims, Tenet Medical group, Tarzana, CA August 2007
  • Egypt: Anti-Semitism and Literature, University of Munich, Elmau, Germany June 2007
  • Judaism and Islam: Revealing Commonalities, Temple Isaiah, May 2007
  • Spain: Jews and Muslims 1095, BCC Temple, April 2007
  • Justice and Faith, Wilshire Boulevard Temple, December 2006
  • Passion of the Prophet, University of Judaism, November 2006
  • Moses and Mohammed: Stories of Prophecy, Ojai Foundation, September 24th 2006
  • Mohammed, Art and Images, Loyola Marymount University, PMU Conference, September 2006.
  • Islam and its forgotten Neighbors: History, Text and Remembering, Princeton University, ACLA Conference, March 24th 2006
  • Sacred Tropes and the Qu’ran: Historical & Contemporary Readings, Claremont Graduate School, WESCOR, March 13th 2006
  • Islam and the History of Democracy.  Iowa State University, Iowa, February 23rd 2006-faculty Development Seminar
  • Women and Islam: Dialogue & Diversity, Iowa State University, Iowa, February 23rd2006
  • Dialogue & Diversity: Perceptions of Women, Kehillat Temple, Pacific Palisades, November 17th, 2005
  • Ramadan/Yom Kippur: Remembering and Forgetting, Temple Israel, Hollywood, October 2005
  • Islam and Tolerance, Iranian Muslim Association of North America, October 2005
  • Islam and Judaism: A Dialogue, Islamic Center of Southern California & the Wallenberg Institute of Ethics, May 2005
  • Religious links: Abraham, Isaac, and Ishmael, Bronfman Youth Fellowship Program, New York City, March 2004
  • Value of Human Life within Islam, Bronfman Youth Fellowship Program, New York City, March 2004
  • Islam and Judaism: Cruel/Compassionate?  Wilshire Temple, Los Angeles, February 2004
  • Islam, and Medieval Intolerance, Temple Israel, Hollywood, Los Angeles, 2004
  • Islam and Anti-Semitism in the Middle Ages, Sigi Ziering Institute, University of Judaism, Los Angeles 2004
  • Islam and the History of Literature, Leo Beack Temple, Los Angeles, 2003
  • Historical Pakistan and Israel: America and the Octopus, Antioch University, Los Angeles 2003
  • Understanding Islam, Seminar Beverly Hills Temple, June 2005
  • History of Female Spirituality and Allah, Loyola Marymount University, 2004
  • South Asian Women and Islam, Panwaa Association, Berkeley, CA 2003
  • Islam and the aftermath of 911,   Baylor University, Texas, 2002
  • Muslim Terrorism and Islam, Baylor University, Texas, 2002
  • Perceptions of Women: Images and Stereotypes, Denver Colorado, AAR National Conference, 2002
  • Fear of Writing and Reading: Pedagogical Approaches, National University, Faculty Development, Los Angeles, 2000
  • Islam, Images, and Women, University of Colima, Mexico 2000
  • Muslim Women and Diversity, Temple Israel, Long Beach, CA 2003
  • Dialogues on Diversity: Pedagogy and Difference, Loyola Marymount University, 2004
  • Unmasking Islam:  Bloody Writings and the Exiled Muslim, Boston College, Regional Conference, 1992
  • Women and Islam, Whittier College, 2000
  • Islam, Alterity, and, Others, Cornell University, 1993
  • Paradox of Judaism and America, Syracuse University, Jewish Union, 1994
  • Islam and Judaism:  A Comparative Approach, Philadelphia AAR National Conference, 1995

Honors & Awards

Hess Seminar, Teaching Testimony and Holocaust, Holocaust Memorial Museum, Washington, D.C.  January 3rd-7th 2011

PhD scholarship, University of South Africa, 2007-8

Summer Literature Faculty, The Lawrenceville School,
New Jersey, summer June-July 2005 & June-July 2006

IMAAN Token of Appreciation Award, October 9th, 2005, Los Angeles
Iranian American Muslim Association of North America

Summer Religion Faculty, Loyola of Chicago
Rome, Italy, June-July 2004

El Segundo High School Leadership Award, May 31, 2003

Outstanding Teaching Award, Syracuse University, 1994

Marine Corps Certification Award, Long-Distance course on Islam for Gulf Students, 1992

Graduate Teaching Award (Scholarship), Syracuse University, 1990-95

Professional Memberships

AAR (American Academy of Religion)
ACLA (American Comparative Literature Association)


National Endowment of Humanities, Institute Grant
“Venice, the Jews, and Italian Culture: Historical Eras and Cultural Representations”
Summer June-July 2006

Coolidge Fellow Grant, Union Theological, Cross Currents, NYC Summer 2003

Hebrew University, Summer Grant, 1995

Courses Taught/Teaching

RELS 110      The Nature and Experience of Religion
RELS 300      Special Topic