East London man pens Diary of a Muslim Nobody
- Credit: Rakesh Makwana and Rahima Begum
A new autobiographical book aims to give voice to the everyday Muslims "not always" represented in the media.
Reaz Rahman, who works at Hackney's BSix Sixth Form College, self-published his book Diary of a Muslim Nobody in the middle of lockdown.
So far it has received sixty five star reviews including support from people such as board member of The British Asian Trust Farzana Baduel, director of IamHipHopMagazine Rishma Dhaliwal and BBC journalist Atul Kotchur among others.
Reaz said: "My aim was to give a voice to the everyday Muslims who just like anyone else struggle and aspire who succeed and fail and, to create a book that all people can relate to."
The book features conversations between Reaz and his parents as well as personal reflections and societal observations.
Reaz says the wider aim of his writing is to present a "Muslim voice that may not always be the one represented in mainstream media".
He added: "The left hand pages are left blank to allow for the reader to make their own notes rather than me dictating perspectives to them and, to allow for a more interactive experience, which seems to have gone down really well so far."
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The author and deputy designated safe guarding lead at BSix explains how the book formed from a collection of his own social media posts which he put together in lockdown.
He says he was spurred on to do so after "many random requests" from people he had never met in real life, who said the posts offered a Muslim perspective not "typically" found.
Reaz says most Muslim writers are typically theological or scholarly.
He says his writing is inspired by the diaspora of his family, his Bangladeshi community and the wider British Muslim community.
His own personal family history saw his parents join the Bangladeshi squatter movement in Tower Hamlets in the 1970s.
Racist attacks and a lack of housing options at the time resulted in the movement which saw British Bangladeshis move into empty properties unfit for purpose.
Now Reaz lives in Redbridge where his family have resided for more than 30 years.
Diary of a Muslim Nobody is available on Amazon.co.uk.