MIT Lecture Explores Link Between Islamophobia and Global Warming

College students
College students / Blend Images via AP
May 11, 2016

A recent lecture at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology explored the possible impact of Islamophobia on global warming.

The lecture, titled "Is Islamophobia Accelerating Global Warming?" has been reported by Fox News and other outlets and mocked on social media. It took place Monday evening and was presented by the university’s Ecology and Justice Forum In Global Studies and Languages, according to an online advertisement.

The event sought to explore "the relation between Islamophobia as the dominant form of racism today and the ecological crisis."

"It looks at the three common ways in which the two phenomena are seen to be linked: as an entanglement of two crises, metaphorically related with one being a source of imagery for the other and both originating in colonial forms of capitalist accumulation," the advertisement explained.

"The talk proposes a fourth way of linking the two: an argument that they are both emanating from a similar mode of being, or enmeshment, in the world, what is referred to as ‘generalized domestication.’"

The talk was administered by Ghassan Hage, currently a future generation professor at the University of Melbourne’s School of Philosophy, Anthropology and Social Inquiry. Hage is currently working on a book of the same title as the lecture and is known for his 2002 book White Nation: Fantasies of White Supremacy in a Multicultural Society.

Hage, who was born in Lebanon, openly supports the anti-Israel Boycott, Divest and Sanctions movement. Hage compared Israelis to "slave owners" on Twitter in 2013, Fox News highlighted, and also suggested that Palestinian militants are "freedom fighters" in an essay published in 2010.

MIT is an acclaimed private research university located in Cambridge, Massachusetts. The school has produced a flurry of noteworthy graduates, including Ben Bernanke, Lawrence "Larry" Summers, Edwin "Buzz" Aldrin, and Charles and David Koch.

It remains unclear how many people attended the lecture, which was free and open to the public.