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Heard on CultureShift

Detroit Lifestyle Blogger and Hijabi Model Tells All in ‘Unashamed’ Memoir

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Image credit: Meta Stange

Leah Vernon is shattering stereotypes about the “perfect Muslim” woman.

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Divorce and anger prompted Leah Vernon, a Detroit fashion blogger and lifestyle model, to pen ”Unashamed: Musings of a Fat, Black Muslim.“ 

Put trauma and hurt into art,” she says during a conversation with CultureShift’s Ryan Patrick Hooper. “When you are with someone for 10 years, married for eight and then it just dissolves right in front of your eyes, you’re just like, ‘What is life?’”  

To filter through her emotions, she turned to her power weapon: writing. 

But instead of taking it directly to her social media following which boasts nearly 50,000 followers on Instagram — Vernon took her blogger status and upped it to author. 

Courtesy of Beacon Press
Courtesy of Beacon Press

Unashamed: Musings of a Fat, Black, Muslim,” released on October 15 by Beacon Press, is a “gritty and raw” front-row seat to Vernon’s life. Within the “conversational” read, she details her relationship with religion and identity. 

It’s definitely a coming-of-age story. You’re going to go through how Leah V. became Leah V.,” she says. “How I started with social media influencing, my mother and our relationship, my relationship with Hijab and being a black Muslim girl in the ghetto and how people treated me.”

Click the player for Leah Vernon’s discussion about her work and the healing power of words and narrative. 


Ryan Patrick Hooper, Host, CultureShift

Ryan Patrick Hooper is a host of CultureShift and longtime arts, culture and music reporter.

hooper@wdet.org Follow @hoopingtonpost

LaToya Cross, Producer, CultureShift

LaToya Cross is a Producer with CultureShift, where she produces in-depth content that spotlights creatives and individuals using their platform to examine, cultivate, shape and shift culture.

Latoya.cross@wdet.org Follow @ToizStory

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