"1700% Project: Mistaken for Muslim" is the 2010 recipient of the Grand Prize award for LinkTV's One Chicago, One Nation film competition. Using the music video format as a subversive tool of engagement and collaboration, artist Anida Yoeu Ali and filmmaker Masahiro Sugano, worked with over 100 diverse volunteers, participants and community members in the Chicagoland area. In their film, narratives collide with music, poetry and politics to create a complex and layered experience.
A poet, dancer, angel, prisoner converge with community to speak, deflect, and intervene against racial profiling and hate crimes. Featured portraits represent real American Muslims in Chicago, people who refuse to end in violence. Central to the video is an unapologetic poem, a response to injustices directed against the Muslim community that reflect both the absurdity and dangers of racially motivated fears. 1700% refers to the rate of increase in hate crimes committed against people perceived as Muslim or Arab after 9/11. The video is one facet of a larger ongoing project titled 1700% Project utilizing art as a form of strategic intervention to present works that challenge monolithic stereotypes of Muslims.