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With vocal public figures such as Malcolm X, Elijah Muhammad, and Louis Farrakhan, the Nation of Islam often appears to be a male-centric religious movement, and over 60 years of scholarship have perpetuated that notion. Yet, women have been pivotal in the NOI's development, playing a major role in creating the public image that made it appealing and captivating. Women of the Nation draws on oral histories and interviews with approximately 100 women across several cities to provide an overview of women's historical contributions and their varied experiences of the NOI, including both its continuing community under Farrakhan and its offshoot into Sunni Islam under Imam W.D. Mohammed. The authors examine how women have interpreted and navigated the NOI's gender ideologies and practices, illuminating the experiences of African-American, Latina, and Native American women within the NOI and their changing roles within this patriarchal movement. The book argues that the Nation of Islam experience for women has been characterized by an expression of Islam sensitive to American cultural messages about race and gender, but also by gender and race ideals in the Islamic tradition. It offers the first exhaustive study of women’s experiences in both the NOI and the W.D. Mohammed community.
"Focusing on women, who sometimes move outside of their ethnic Muslim spaced and interact with other Muslim ethnic groups in search of gender justice, this ethnographic study of African American and South Asian immigrant Muslims in Chicago and Atlanta explores how Islamic ideas of racial harmony amd equality create hopeful possibilities in an American society that remains challenged by race and class inequalities."--Page 4 of cover.
Explores modern African-American Islamic thought within the context of Islamic history, giving special attention to questions of universality versus particularity.
A Nation Can Rise No Higher Than Its Women: African American Muslim Women in the Nation of Islam, 1950–1975 challenges traditional interpretations of African American women who joined the Original Nation of Islam during the Civil Right-Black Power era. Using a wealth of academic research and firsthand accounts, Jeffries thoroughly debunks the popular opinion that women were not influential in the Nation of Islam, revealing instead that they were heralded in the movement. Women provided a clear, and often sought after voice in the advancement of not only the Nation, but the rise of Black pride and self-awareness during one of the most important periods of Black history in the United States.
New Perspectives on the Nation of Islam contributes to the ongoing dialogue about the nature and influence of the Nation of Islam (NOI), bringing fresh insights to areas that have previously been overlooked in the scholarship of Elijah Muhammad’s NOI, the Imam W.D. Mohammed community and Louis Farrakhan’s Resurrected NOI. Bringing together contributions that explore the formation, practices, and influence of the NOI, this volume problematizes the history of the movement, its theology, and relationships with other religious movements. Contributors offer a range of diverse perspectives, making connections between the ideology of the NOI and gender, dietary restrictions and foodways, the internationalization of the movement, and the civil rights movement. This book provides a state-of-the-art overview of current scholarship on the Nation of Islam, and will be relevant to scholars of American religion and history, Islamic studies, and African American Studies.
Scholarship on African American history has changed dramatically since the publication of George Washington Williams’ pioneering A History of the Negro Race in America in 1882. Organized chronologically and thematically, What is African American History? offers a concise and compelling introduction to the field of African American history as well as the black historical enterpriseÑpast, present, and future. Pero Gaglo Dagbovie discusses many of the discipline’s important turning points, subspecialties, defining characteristics, debates, texts, and scholars. The author explores the growth and maturation of scholarship on African American history from late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries until the field achieved significant recognition from the ‘mainstream’ U.S. historical profession in the 1970s. Subsequent decades witnessed the emergence and development of key theoretical approaches, controversies, and dynamic areas of concentration in black history, the vibrant field of black women’s history, the intriguing relationship between African American history and Black Studies, and the imaginable future directions of African American history in the twenty-first century. What is African American History? will be a practical introduction for all students of African American history and Black Studies.
An exploration of twentieth and twenty-first century U.S. Muslim womanhood that centers the lived experience of women of color For Sylvia Chan-Malik, Muslim womanhood is constructed through everyday and embodied acts of resistance, what she calls affective insurgency. In negotiating the histories of anti-Blackness, U.S. imperialism, and women’s rights of the twentieth and twenty-first centuries, Being Muslim explores how U.S. Muslim women’s identities are expressions of Islam as both Black protest religion and universal faith tradition. Through archival images, cultural texts, popular media, and interviews, the author maps how communities of American Islam became sites of safety, support, spirituality, and social activism, and how women of color were central to their formation. By accounting for American Islam’s rich histories of mobilization and community, Being Muslim brings insight to the resistance that all Muslim women must engage in the post-9/11 United States. From the stories that she gathers, Chan-Malik demonstrates the diversity and similarities of Black, Arab, South Asian, Latina, and multiracial Muslim women, and how American understandings of Islam have shifted against the evolution of U.S. white nationalism over the past century. In borrowing from the lineages of Black and women-of-color feminism, Chan-Malik offers us a new vocabulary for U.S. Muslim feminism, one that is as conscious of race, gender, sexuality, and nation, as it is region and religion.

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