Summary

Michael A. Gomez is Professor of History at New York University.


Beginning with Latin America in the fifteenth century, this book, first published in 2005, is a social history of the experiences of African Muslims and their descendants throughout the Americas, including the Caribbean. The record under slavery is examined, as is the post-slavery period into the twentieth century. The experiences vary, arguably due to some extent to the Old World context. Muslim revolts in Brazil are also discussed, especially in 1835, by way of a nuanced analysis. The second part of the book looks at the emergence of Islam among the African-descended in the United States in the twentieth century, with successive chapters on Noble Drew Ali, Elijah Muhammad, and Malcolm X, with a view to explaining how orthodoxy arose from varied unorthodox roots.