Islam and the Blackamerican: Looking toward the Third Resurrection

Islam and the Blackamerican: Looking toward the Third Resurrection

Islam and the Blackamerican: Looking toward the Third Resurrection

Islam and the Blackamerican: Looking toward the Third Resurrection

Excerpt

This book traces the ideological encounter between Islam and Blackamericans, from the proto-Islamic black-nationalist spin-off movements of the early twentieth century through the rise and preponderance of orthodox Sunni Islam by the century’s end. While such a trajectory might connote a primarily historical emphasis, this book does not aim at a descriptive survey of the places, dates, and personalities connected with the spread of Islam among Blackamericans. Its primary focus is, rather, the ideological dislocations and attempted adjustments that accompanied the shift in the basis of religious authority following the influx of Muslims from the Middle East and Asia after the repeal of the National Origins Act and the Asiatic Barred Zone in 1965. It proceeds in the concentric contexts of: (1) the perduring struggle on the part of Blackamericans to settle upon a self-definition that is both functionally enabling and sufficiently “authentic”; (2) the inextricable power and influence of white supremacy as a seminal feature of the contemporary global cum American sociopolitical order; and (3) the hegemonic presumptions and deployments of modern, Middle Eastern and South Asian Islam, particularly as manifested in the collective vision of Muslim immigrants to the United States.

While commonly treated as the most recent chapter in the story of American immigration, prior to 1965 Islam in America was dominated by an indigenous black presence. With rare exceptions, however, the basis of Blackamerican Islam had been the thoroughly . . .

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