In this timely event, we pull back the curtain on the experiences of immigrants in the West, examine Western expectations of gratitude, and explore the interplay between ideas of assimilation, integration, and ‘worthiness’.

Join media expert Aaqil Ahmed, 21st US Poet Laureate Juan Felipe Herrera, and author Ayisha Malik as they discuss the wide spectrum of the refugee and immigrant experience, offering nuanced, complicated perspectives on the notion of “good” immigrants.

About The Host

Saeed Khan

Saeed Khan is Senior Lecturer in Near East & Asian Studies and Global Studies at Wayne State University, Detroit, Michigan. He is also the co-founder of the Institute for Social Policy & Understanding, and a panelist on Turning Point for the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation.

About The Speakers

Juan Felipe Herrera

Juan Felipe Herrera is the 21st Poet Laureate of the United States (2015 – 2016) and is the first Latino to hold the position. Herrera’s many collections of poetry include Notes on the Assemblage, Senegal Taxi, Half of the World in Light: New and Selected Poems. He was a recipient of the PEN, Beyond Margins Award and the National Book Critics Circle Award.

Aaqil Ahmed

Aaqil is the former Head of Religion and Ethics at the BBC and Channel 4, delivering many award-winning programmes, including The Life of Muhammad. He is also Professor of Media at Bolton University, Non-Executive Director of the Advertising Standards Authority and a consultant in Television production, communications and diversity.

Ayisha Malik

Ayisha Malik’s, Sofia Khan is Not Obliged, was a WHSmith Fresh Talent Pick. Ayisha was shortlisted for The Asian Women of Achievement Award and Marie Claire’s Future Shapers’ Award. She is also the writer behind Nadiya Hussain’s novels. Her third novel, This Green and Pleasant Land, is a dramedy about a Muslim family building a mosque in an English village.