Homayra Ziad

Homayra Ziad

Senior Lecturer

Contact Information

Research Interests: history, practice and literature of Islamic spirituality and virtue ethics; philosophical Sufism; Qur'an interpretation; contemporary Islam in the United States; Islam in the Mughal empire; language and subjectivity; religion and the arts; religion and vocation; community-based research; interreligious activism.

Education: Phd, Yale University

Homayra Ziad is a scholar-activist and a nationally recognized interfaith and intercultural practitioner. She received her doctorate in Religious Studies from Yale, training as a generalist in classical and modern Islam with a special interest in philosophical Sufism and Indo-Persian textual traditions. Homayra has been an educator in universities and non-profits and practices community-engaged teaching and scholarship rooted in equitable and compassionate relationship-building that helps her students envision and build more just and compassionate communities. She is Senior Lecturer at the Program in Islamic Studies at Johns Hopkins University, Faculty Fellow at Hopkins’ Center for Social Concern, and a Faith and Health Fellow with Interfaith America. She is co-leading an effort to create the first major in Religion at Hopkins and supporting efforts to assess the university’s resources for engaging faith-based diversity among students. She is a member of Hopkins’ Diversity Leadership Council and a 2021 recipient of Hopkins’ undergraduate teaching award, and has been recognized for her innovative teaching and mentorship at the university. In 2020-21, in collaboration with Drs. Shawntay Stocks (Hopkins) and Hussein Rashid (Harvard), Homayra led a Wabash-funded faculty fellowship on community-engaged learning and Islamic Studies. In the same year, she co-led an Interfaith America-funded project with public health scholar Dr. Yousra Yusuf (NYU Langone). Faith in the Vaccine mobilized a cohort of twenty students to address vaccine hesitancy and access in underrepresented communities, with an emphasis on working with religious and faith-based community organizations. Homayra also serves on the Board of the ACLU of Maryland and served for two years as Board President.

Homayra was founding co-chair of the American Academy of Religion’s Interreligious and Interfaith Studies Group.For twenty years, she has created impactful programming in many different educational contexts that supports key community stakeholders (students, educators, activists, artists, and religious and faith-based leaders) develop the skills and sensitivities to navigate religious pluralism, become familiar with each other’s deeply held values, and create networks of social change. As a scholar-activist, she co-creates and consults on projects in religion, health/wellness and the arts, which includes co-founding 99 Clay Vessels, an arts and social justice project by and for Muslim women, and Art, Religion and Cities at Morgan State University, a public-facing teaching and internship project that interrogates the history of race, justice, and community-building in museums. She is also on the core team for Healing Khayal, a music and healing residency for young artists in Pakistan. Homayra facilitates workshops for activists grounded in religious and spiritual traditions, writes for academic and popular venues, and consults on programs for film and media. She is co-editor of Words to Live By: Sacred Sources for Interreligious Engagement (Orbis Press, 2018).