Black Routes to Islam (Critical Black Studies) by Manning Marable, Hishaam D. Aidi

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By Manning Marable, Hishaam D. Aidi

The severe Black experiences sequence celebrates its fourth quantity, Black Routes to Islam. The series, under the final supervision of Manning Marable, features readers and anthologies analyzing hard themes in the modern black experience--in the USA, the Caribbean, Africa, and around the African Diaspora. Previously released within the sequence are Transnational Blackness, Racializing Justice, Disenfranchising Lives: The Racism, legal Justice, and legislations Reader (September 2007) and Seeking greater floor: The storm Katrina problem, Race, and Public coverage Reader (January 2008).

Celebrating the fourth quantity of


Series Editor: Manning Marable

The authors incorporated during this quantity discover varied dimensions of the greater than century-long interplay among Black the USA and Islam. beginning with the nineteenth century narratives of African American tourists to the Holy Land, the next chapters probe Islam’s function in city social routine, track and pop culture, gender dynamics, relatives among African americans and Muslim immigrants, and the racial politics of yankee Islam with the continued warfare in Iraq and the US’s deepening involvement within the Orient.

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Sample text

Prior to 1948, African American travel writers represented Palestine as an exotic destination in need of colonial intervention, yet they were also attached to the region as geography of liberation. For these writers, Zionism, orientalism, and even Islamic humanism were narrative tropes as well as political movements that spoke to the needs for African Americans to engage antiblack politics globally. Palestine was an ambivalent space in African American travel writing because it was at once non-Western yet was also the scene of exodus and, for some, an extension of Northern Africa.

Indeed, without this historical achievement, it is doubtful that Islam would have come to enjoy the success that it has come to enjoy among Blackamericans. If only by default, Black Religion remained the primary means by which Blackamerican proto- and Sunni Islam validated itself prior to 1965. For the Islamizers, and even many Sunni Muslims, it was not primarily the Qur’an, Sunnah, or books of law and exegesis that authenticated a view as Islamic. It was, rather, the extent to which a view was perceived as contributing to the throwing off the yoke of white domination or to conforming to the dictates of the new black cultural orthodoxy.

In order to understand why most African American radicals embraced the creation of the state of Israel, one must consider how African American political struggles have been rooted within and against notions of the national and international. As Nikihl Singh shows in Black is a Country, black Americans have waged struggles that have been shaped by the desire for international and diasporic movements and by the desire for redress within the framework of the nation-state. When the modern state of Israel was created in 1948, African American radicals were committed to a civil rights strategy in the United States that looked to the nation-state’s logic of inclusion as a rubric for the movement; this may have led some African Americans to see the formation of a Jewish state as the most appropriate means to challenge anti-Jewish anti-Semitism.

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