Citation for Teaching about Muslims in America

Citation styles are based on the Chicago Manual of Style, 15th Ed., and the MLA Style Manual, 2nd Ed..


Hermansen, Marcia K. . "Teaching about Muslims in America." In Teaching Islam. Ed. Brannon M. Wheeler. Oxford Islamic Studies Online. Dec 5, 2020. <>.


Hermansen, Marcia K. . "Teaching about Muslims in America." In Teaching Islam. , edited by Brannon M. Wheeler. Oxford Islamic Studies Online, (accessed Dec 5, 2020).

Teaching about Muslims in America

Marcia K. Hermansen

THE TOPIC “MUSLIMS IN AMERICA” IS INCREASINGLY featured in the academic curriculum, occasionally as a course of its own within specialized programs or more often as a session or part of a session within an introductory course on “Islam,” “World Religions,” or “Religion in America.” Depending on the context, various approaches to the topic could be productive. I would like to suggest some of these approaches as well as indicate some of the resources available for teaching about this topic. The strategies used for presenting this material will vary with the composition of the student audience and the overall focus of the course.

Since I am currently teaching “Islam” in an environment where a large percentage of the class is made up of American-born Muslims, I have become increasingly aware of the need to provide an American context to the course. Even in parts of the country where the audience is not so diverse, we should be cautious about exoticizing Islam by presenting it as a religion that is only practiced in archaic or alien sites. This is a powerful rationale for incorporating material about Muslims in America into a range of courses.

Initially, it might be noted for nonspecialists that the topic “Muslims in America” intersects with a number of cultural debates current in American society. One example of this is the increasing pluralism apparent in the general population and especially in the university population, as the first generation of students born since the immigration boom of the mid-seventies enters college. In addition, it may be observed that scholarly as well as popular writing about Muslims in America sometimes becomes politicized. One camp of commentators argues that Muslims, according to a “clash of civilizations” model,1 are intrinsically conditioned to be undemocratic and reject the values of American life. Other scholars, such as Yvonne Y. Haddad, Jane I. Smith, John Esposito, and Earle Waugh have studied Muslims in America with more attention to their constructive adaptations and contributions to the new environment. In fact, Yvonne Haddad’s books and articles represent the largest corpus of work specifically devoted to Muslims in America.2

Periodically, political and cultural events raise issues related to the study of the Muslim presence in the United States in a provocative way, examples being the World Trade Center bombing, the refusal of a Muslim-identified basketball player to salute the American flag, child marriage, female circumcision, and so on. All of these may be sensationalized but are very much a part of the public consciousness. Since I initially formulated this paragraph, the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001 have thrust these issues even more into the foreground.

This background of troubling political and cultural confrontation will inevitably become part of classroom discussion of issues related to Islam and Muslims. Such discussions may in turn lead to broader discussions of issues such as the role of immigration in American society, whether there should be one set of normative values for Americans, what is it like to have multiple identities/affiliations, how far can one extend cultural relativism, race in American society, and so on. In summary, the instructor incorporating material on Muslims in America will need to be prepared not only with material specific to this topic but also ideally will have a broad acquaintance with contemporary social and cultural theory and issues.


Since immigration is the context of much of the Muslim experience in America, some discussion of the history of the Muslim presence in America is appropriate to set the stage for this topic. Yvonne Haddad and Adair Lummis have proposed models of stages or waves of immigrants characterized by diverse concerns, ethnic backgrounds, and religious attitudes.3 A synopsis of this model is that there have been some five stages of Muslim immigration to America. “The first wave, 1875–1913, was composed mostly of uneducated and unskilled young men (some as young as thirteen years old) from the rural areas of what now constitutes Syria and Lebanon, then under Ottoman rule. The second wave, 1918–1922, followed World War I. By the time of the third wave, 1930–1938, American immigration laws confined immigration primarily to relatives of those already in the country who were naturalized citizens.”4

According to Haddad and Lummis, “The fourth wave, 1947–1960, reflects America’s assumption of its leadership role in the world. Immigrants began to include such people as North Africans and displaced groups from Eastern Europe fleeing communism, as well as children of the educated elites in various Arab countries, mostly urban in background, educated, and Westernized prior to their arrival in the United States.”5 These immigrants, who included many South Asian Muslims, perceived themselves as permanent settlers and often came in pursuit of higher education or career opportunities. It is this cohort that founded many of the more permanent Muslim institutions in America, for example, the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA) and the Muslim Student Association.

The change of immigration laws in the mid-1960s opened the doors to what might be considered a fifth wave, although diverse backgrounds and causes for immigration characterize these later Muslim immigrants. The wars and upheavals of this period gave rise to their own ethnic waves of immigrant Iranians, Afghans, Somalians, Bosnians, and so on.

In addition to profiling these immigrant Muslims, interest has also been taken in the fact that a significant proportion of the Africans brought to the New World as slaves may have been Muslim.6 Middle Eastern and South Asian Muslims only came in sizeable numbers during the present century. Depending on the location of one’s academic institution, there may be local connections to the earlier history of Muslim immigration to the United States. The “immigration” aspect of Muslim history in America can be used in classroom lectures and student projects associated with local history. Students from Muslim immigrant backgrounds might become interested in tracing the history of their own family and the Islamic institutions in which they participate. For example, the West Coast was one site of immigration by Punjabi farmers, including Muslims, studied by Karen Leonard in Making Ethnic Choices.7 Detroit and the automobile factories attracted both Arab Christians and Muslims. Often large educational institutions attracted Muslim students, who during a later stage of immigration founded Islamic institutions such as the Islamic Society of North America and the Muslim Student Association. In the southern states there are still a few traces of the earliest African Muslim immigrants, for example, handwritten religious texts preserved in memory.8

The history of immigration policies in the United States provides a backdrop for understanding the increase of Muslim immigration in the 1960s, roughly corresponding to the era of the Civil Rights movement. If a class has many students from immigrant backgrounds, various aspects of this history can tie in to a productive discussion, for example, issues of assimilation, adaptation, the myth of return, and so on. The recent history of Muslim societies and events such as the turmoil in Palestine, the Iranian revolution, the Afghan war, Somalian, Bosnian, and Kosovar crises may also be brought into the presentation when discussing recent Muslim immigration patterns.

The population of Muslims in North America is a matter of some discussion, with the striking popular observation being that the current estimate of roughly 6 million indicates that Muslims are the largest non-Christian minority religion in the United States.9 Statistics are difficult to obtain, but the total population is thought to be between 3 and 8 million, and the three major groups are African American (indigenous) Muslims, Arab Muslims, and South Asian Muslims. One estimate puts African Americans at 42 percent, South Asians at 24.4 percent, and Arabs at 12.4 percent (with smaller groups of Africans at 6.2%, Iranians at 3.6%, Southeast Asians at 2%, European Americans at 1.6%, and “other” at 5.4%). Another estimate puts “Americans” at 30 percent, Arabs at 33 percent, and South Asians at 29 percent. There are other differences, between the majority Sunni and minority Shi‘i groups, smaller sectarian groups like the Isma‘ilis, Zaidis, and Khojas, and sects like the Ahmadiyyas and Druze, whose Islamic identity is contested.10

Diaspora Religion

The consideration of the immigrant Muslim community also permits classroom discussion on the topic of diaspora religion, a subject that is coming under closer academic scrutiny.11 The theory of religious adaptation and persistence in diaspora is still in the developmental phase, as one scholar commented, “the earlier literature on South Asians in the West focused on social concerns and neglected religion, reinforcing a stereotype of the migrants leaving their religion in the old country.”12 Creative adaptation in the diaspora is a topic for which scholarly and pedagogical resources are increasingly available. For example, the Pluralism Project at Harvard under the direction of Diana Eck produced a CD-ROM entitled “On Common Ground,” which features images and text relating to the new religious communities taking root on American soil. In order to create this resource, graduate students in religion from Harvard, representing various regions of the United States, studied their local immigrant religious communities. One adaptation of this type of student project is Karen Leonard’s assignment for a graduate class in the Los Angeles area to study the burial customs of various immigrant religious communities and how they have adapted to American laws and facilities.13

African-American Islam

A survey of the Muslim population in the United States today discloses that between one-third and 42 percent of American Muslims are African-Americans, who have accepted the Islamic religion. The study of African-American Islam is in itself a rich and complex topic. My experience is that students have awareness of names such as Malcolm X and the Nation of Islam14 but are not clear of the relationship between movements such as the Nation of Islam and mainstream Islam, leading to much initial confusion. The instructor has to decide how to frame the relationship of certain proto-Islamic movements to mainstream Islam. To label such movements “non-Islamic,” as many Muslims might, would violate the self- understandings of the participants in them. At the same time, it is clear that theological aspects or political or social positions taken by some of the new religious movements are unacceptable from the standpoint of traditional Islamic teachings. Attempting to define Islam as “orthodox” is in itself problematic, as scholars such as Wilfred Cantwell Smith have argued that Islam is in any case “orthoprax,” primarily defining adherence through performance rather than the assertion of particular dogmas or creeds. In any case, basic historical background about the period in which these movements emerged will be helpful in explaining their appeal in the African-American community. Helpful resources are Aminah Beverly McCloud’s African American Islam,15 and Richard Brent Turner’s work, Islam in the African American Experience.16 Alex Haley’s retelling of Malcolm X’s biography is a classic in its own right, and excerpts of Malcolm X’s dramatic conversion experience while on the pilgrimage could be used in a class reader.17

I have occasionally found aspects of Nation of Islam theology to be difficult for an unsophisticated student audience. Some of the teachings, for example, the myth that whites are blue-eyed devils created by an evil scientist called Yacub,18 can be very disturbing for students in terms of their reactions and their reactions to each other’s reactions. For example, white students may laugh or ridicule the material or become very offended. I have experienced presentations of this material both by white students and by African-American students and have come to realize how sensitive it is. My caveat is that the level of the students and their sophistication must be taken into account. If the instructor is not willing to spend the necessary time unpacking the material, then it may be preferable to avoid some details.

On the other hand, in a student group with more sophistication, Nation of Islam theology offers opportunities for understanding the shaping of theology and the dynamics of new religious movements. An instructor in the “Introductory Theology” course at my current institution uses the book, The Nation of Islam: An American Millenarian Movement by Martha F. Lee,19 as a text in order to confront students with just such issues. Understanding the relationship of the Nation of Islam to mainstream Sunni Islam is also complex, since many American Sunni Muslims either do not take a particularly confrontational stance to the Nation of Islam or else condemn it virulently. I suggest explaining the reticence to condemn as emerging from a tolerance of gradualism. After all, taking the long perspective, Malcolm X and Wallace Muhammad are ex-members of the Nation of Islam, who ultimately became mainstream Muslims. While many Muslims have clear differences with the teachings of the Nation of Islam—for example, on the teaching that Fard Muhammad is an incarnation of the divine—often they refrain from excessive condemnation in the hope that even this branch of the movement will eventually mainstream.

The popular association of Islam with African-American celebrities in the media should be considered in the light of broader patterns in American culture such as the representation of African Americans as predominantly sports stars, musicians, or criminals.20 More generally, the issue of the often negative representation of Islam and Muslims in American popular culture may become a topic for discussion. Recommended sources on this sort of stereotyping are studies by John Woods21 and Laurence Michalak.22

Urban Geography

Another approach to the study of Muslims in America is to highlight issues of urban geography. Students living in New York and Chicago can be shown maps of their urban areas with the changing patterns of Islamic centers indicated at various historical periods. Questions that can be pursued include: Where do Muslims usually live, how are neighborhoods influenced by ethnicity? How can Muslims create sacred space in America, what is essential to a mosque? Sources of articles on various urban centers include Haddad’s Muslim Communities, which considers Seattle, upstate New York, and San Diego. Raymond Williams compares Chicago and Houston in the 1980s (including maps).23 If a given region has not been previously studied, this topic could become the basis for an assignment, in which students do some mapping of their own locality in terms of the history and current locations of Muslim institutions and presence. Paul Numrich studied the patterns of Buddhist and Muslim settlement and religious institutions in Chicago over the last fifty years, and the maps in his article might provide a model for similar presentations involving your local area.24 Another helpful source for understanding the creation of a “new Muslim space” by immigrants is Barbara D. Metcalf’s edited volume, Making Muslim Space in North America and Europe.25

As an example of new configurations of Muslim space in North America, the Christian Science Monitor video “Muslims in America” shows the mosque in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, where an innovative approach to separate seating areas for males and females situates them in sections beside each other rather than having the males placed in front. If one conducts a class visit to a local center, students might be asked to consider how the building’s use of space and symbolism reflect its situation. Is it an adaptation of a previous structure, for example, churches in New Jersey where the figures in the stained glass windows have been covered over, an ex-movie theatre in Chicago where the seats have been removed, or are they attempts to represent Islam in America from the foundation up.26

The environment within the United States in which Muslim immigrants live may, in turn, influence their religiosity. The question may be asked, does this diversity arise from immigration patterns, local American subcultures, or a combination of factors. Canadian readers of this article should be aware of specifically Canadian aspects of Muslim identities in North America. A starting point are some of the publications of Earle Waugh. A comparison of Canadian multiculturalism and postcolonial experience with the context of Muslims in the United States could be instructive as well.

Muslims’ Identities and American Culture

One avenue of access for students to appreciate the Muslim presence in the Unites States is to point out Islamic elements in mainstream American culture. This can be especially helpful in making connections for Hispanic and African-American students. For example, a connection to the Spanish heritage can be made through a presentation on Islamicate architecture. This works especially well in Southern California and Florida. While teaching in Southern California, I began my slide presentation on Islamic architecture with an image of a window at San Diego State University, where some of the older buildings featured Hispano-Mauresque architecture. I would ask students to guess which Muslim society the image came from, and after many tries I would finally tell them that it was as close as the next campus building. This really brought home the point about the connections of Islam with histories closer to their own experience.

At the same time, Islamic cultural influences on contemporary pop culture in the West and in the United States, in particular, can be brought into the classroom. Examples are Islamic influences on rap music,27 collaboration of rock and alternative groups with Islamic musicians,28 and John Moyne and Coleman Barks’s translations of Rumi’s poetry.29 A number of scholarly studies of American Muslim identity and “Americanization” may provide material for consideration of this topic.30

Living in America presents Muslims with many questions that would not arise in traditional, more homogenous contexts, for example, the applicability of Islamic law within the American system,31 the accommodation of practice of Muslims from various legal schools and ethnic backgrounds within a single Islamic center. I have found a useful entry piece to this topic to be an article in Steve Barboza’s collection, American Jihad: Islam after Malcolm X.32 This selection, narrated by Professor Ali Asani of Harvard, points out many issues faced by American Muslims, including diversity within the community and the challenge of overcoming stereotypes which Muslims themselves may participate in perpetuating.

Speaking comparatively, it is possible to imagine that American Muslim institutions of worship may come more and more to sort themselves out along lines of practice so that one may come to speak of liberal, conservative, and “orthodox” mosques and Islamic centers, just as American Jews have come to constitute Reform, Conservative, and Orthodox (among other) congregations. Within mosques, one index of this is the means for separating males and females. Some centers use partitions and curtains while in other cases where the structure has been designed to be a mosque, women may occupy a balcony. In some centers women do not attend or sit in a completely separate room connected only by a remote loudspeaker.

One debate occurring within the American Muslim community concerns the place of women. While liberal or modernizing mosques, centers, and associations integrate women into teaching and decision-making positions, other mosques, centers, and associations minimize women’s participation or are uncertain how to include them. Women in South Asia traditionally did not pray in mosques,33 while in the Arab world they did, and practices in the United States vary (and depend partly on the physical structures). Women’s access to mosques for meetings of their own is regulated by the Imams, men who are usually immigrants trained outside the United States and not necessarily sympathetic to meetings about, for example, family counseling or domestic abuse. At the same time, the websites and e-mails issued by Muslim organizations, such as Sound Vision in Chicago, are increasingly airing these debates from a Muslim perspective.34

Muslims, in a similar manner to Jews, face the issue of whether there can there be a “cultural” Muslim, someone who identifies with the Muslim identity without being religious. In this context, a class might discuss comparative Christian, Jewish, and Islamic concepts of religious identity in confessional and legal terms.

Today, due to the emergence of English as a Muslim lingua franca and the role of the West in projecting Cyberspace Islam, American Muslims are becoming more influential in establishing norms and identity for the community [ummah] as a whole.


Yvonne Haddad has at times configured the categories of American-Muslim experience as that of settlers, sojourners, and converts. This model could provide yet another way to present aspects of Muslim identity in North America.

It may be that a course offers an opportunity to discuss the angle of conversion to Islam in America. The major study of this is Larry Poston’s Islamic Da‘wah in the West: Muslim Missionary Activity and the Dynamics of Conversion to Islam.35 Poston’s analysis suggests that conversion to Islam in the West may not replicate the pattern of William James’s model of a sudden adolescent snapping, emerging in many cases from an unstable personality. Rather, many converts to Islam are adults who spent much time researching and reflecting on religious issues. The experience of American women converts can also provoke interest and challenge the stereotype that Muslim women are oppressed by religion.36 Catalogues from Muslim publishers such as Kazi Publications in Chicago offer a range of convert literature37 and video testimonials.

The prisons as sites of conversion is also a fascinating aspect of Islam in America.38 Metcalf’s collection on Making Muslim Space features a particularly interesting chapter by Robert Dannin on Islam in the prison system as a “counter discipline.” Dannin explains how Islam for prisoners can offer “an autonomous source of education and discipline in all aspects of life.”39 Dannin notes how “Islam’s popularity in the prison system rests in part on the way in which Quranically prescribed activities structure an alternative social space that enables the prisoner to reside, as it were in another place within the same confining walls.”40

The phenomenon of prison conversion is significant. Dannin offers the statistic that in New York State alone, the Department of Corrections counted 10,186 registered Muslim inmates in 82 different prisons in 1992. African-American Muslims were 16.9 percent of the prison inmates and one-third of incarcerated African Americans in New York State.41 American institutions such as the military and the prison system increasingly accommodate the religious requirements of Muslims and provide them with Islamic chaplains.


The consideration of Muslim institutions in America allows students to observe religious history and adaptation in the making. Articles are already available which consider issues like the Islamic Center as a necessary response to the situation of Muslims in diaspora, the changing role of the Imam, whose duties now come to include what might be considered “pastoral” functions such as family counseling and mediation,42 Islam in the American military, the participation of women, and a growing Islamic schooling movement. A large project founded by the PEW Charitable trust and conducted by Sulayman Nyang and Zahid Bikhari at Georgetown University is studying the interface of emerging Muslim institutions in the United States with American organizational patterns. Research findings can be followed on their web site.43

Sufism and Sectarianism in America

Yet another way of trying to understand the scope of the American Muslim community is by its members’ attraction to forms of religiousness, whether liberal, conservative, or Sufi.44 The Muslim community itself is internally diverse and Shi‘i, Nizari Isma‘ili, and Ahmadi communities add their diversity to the American landscape.45

In some parts of the country, students may have come in contact with popular American Sufism such as Sufi dancing. Sufi movements provide examples of the adaptation of Muslim practices to an American setting. An article describing many of these movements is my article “In the Garden of American Sufi Movements: Hybrids and Perennials.”46

Internet Searches

There are many informative web sites featuring material relevant to the study of Muslims in America. In undergraduate teaching, Internet materials offer not only a valuable source of up-to-the-minute data but also present information in a format that levels the canons of authority that might help students to assess the reliability of sources from which they are drawing. On the Internet students will be made aware of some of the contestations of identity and legitimacy among various groups.47 Related web-based assignments might involve comparing a number of American Sufi websites, comparing the Nation of Islam with the Warith Deen Muhammad web site, or exploring how the ISNA web site represents Muslim identity.

A suggestive article on this new frontier explores American Muslim youth on the Internet and focuses on the idea of fatwas (Islamic legal opinions) being issued in new contexts.48 A good starting place for discovering Web sites with Islamic materials is the Web page of Professor Alan Godlas of the University of Georgia.49 This page has links to sites relating to a whole range of topics in Islamic Studies. I have referenced a number of other links to material found on-line in the course of this article. For bibliography, I would recommend Jane I. Smith’s Islam in America.50


1. Samuel P. Huntington, The Clash of Civilizations and the Remaking of World Order (New York: Simon and Schuster, 1996).

2. Yvonne Y. Haddad, ed., Muslims of America (New York: Oxford University Press, 1991), ed. with Jane Idelman Smith, Muslim Communities in North America (Albany: State University of New York Press, 1994), and Mission to America: Five Islamic Sectarian Communities in North America (Gainesville: University of Florida Press, 1993).

3. Yvonne Y. Haddad and Adair Lummis, Islamic Values in the United States: A Comparative Study (New York: Oxford University Press, 1987).

4. Yvonne Y. Haddad, “Make Room for the Muslims!” in Religious Diversity and American Religious History, ed. Walter H. Conser, Jr. and Susan B. Twiss (Athens: University of Georgia Press, 1997), 219.

5. Haddad and Loomis, Islamic Values, 219.

6. Sylviane A. Diouf, Servants of Allah: African Muslims Enslaved in the Americas (New York: New York University Press, 1998).

7. Karen I. Leonard, Making Ethnic Choices: California’s Punjabi Mexican Americans (Philadelphia: Temple University Press, 1992).

8. Diouf, Servants of Allah, 129–30.

9. Fareed H. Nu‘man, The Muslim Population in the United States (Washington: American Muslim Council, 1992). Useful material and charts from this population are available on-line at

10. Karen Leonard, “American Muslim Discourse and Practice,” forthcoming.

11. For example, Harold Coward, The South Asian Religious Diaspora in Britain, Canada, and the United States (Albany: State University of New York Press, 2000).

12. John R. Hinnells, “The Study of Diaspora Religion,” in A New Handbook of Living Religions (Cambridge, MA: Blackwell, 1997), 820.

13. Karen Leonard, “Mourning in a New Land. Changing Asian Practices in Southern California,” Journal of Orange County Studies 3/4 (Fall 1989/Spring 1990): 62–69.

14. On-line at

15. African American Islam (New York: Routledge, 1995).

16. Islam in the African American Experience (Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1997).

17. Malcolm X, The Autobiography of Malcolm X (New York: Ballantine Books, 1992).

18. Martha F. Lee, The Nation of Islam: An American Millenarian Movement (Syracuse: Syracuse University Press, 1996), 28–29.

19. Ibid.

20. As in Vincent F. Rocchio, Reel Racism: Confronting Hollywood’s Construction of Afro-American Culture (Boulder: Westview Press, 2000).

21. John Woods, “Imagining and Stereotyping Islam,” in Muslims in America: Opportunities and Challenges, ed. Asad Husain et al. (Chicago: International Strategy and Policy Institute, 1996), 45–77.

22. Laurence Michalak, Cruel and Unusual: Negative Images of Arabs in American Popular Culture (Washington: American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee, Issue Paper 15, 3d ed., 1988).

23. Raymond B. Williams, Religion of Immigrants from India and Pakistan: New Threads in the American Tapestry (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1988), chapters 7 and 8.

24. Paul Numrich, “Recent Immigrant Religions in a Restructuring Metropolis: New Religious Landscapes in Chicago,” Journal of Cultural Geography 17:1 (1997): 55–76.

25. Making Muslim Space in North America and Europe (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1996).

26. Gulzar Haidar, “Muslim Space and the Practice of Architecture: A Personal Odyssey,” in Metcalf, ed., Making Muslim Space, 31–45.

27. While most influence occurs through the Nation of Islam contacts in Black America and even a particular sect called the “five percenters,” there is also a genre of Islamist rap, for example, the group “Soldiers of Allah.”

28. On this see Carl Ernst, The Shambhala Guide to Sufism (Boston: Shambhala, 1997).

29. We Are Three. Open Secret: Versions of Rumi, translated by John Moyne and Coleman Barks (Putney, VT: Threshhold, 1984). Barks’s renditions have been featured as part of a public television special hosted by Bill Moyers, The Language of Life: A Festival of Poets (New York: Doubleday, 1995), also available on videocassettes from Public Affairs Television, 1995.

30. Yvonne Y. Haddad and John L. Esposito, Muslims on the Americanization Path (New York: Oxford University Press, 2000), and a forthcoming collection edited by Karen Leonard, Muslim Identities in North America.

31. See Katheen Moore, al-Mughtaribun: American Law and the Transformation of Muslim Life in the United States (“Albany: State University of New York Press, 1995).

32. “Allah at Harvard,” an interview with Ali Asani, in Steven Barboza, American Jihad: Islam after Malcolm X (New York: Doubleday, 1994), 36–42.

33. Regula Qureshi, “Transcending Space: Recitation and Community among South Asian Muslims in Canada,” in Metcalf, ed., Making Muslim Space, 46–64.


35. Islamic Da‘wah in the West (New York: Oxford University Press, 1992).

36. Marcia K. Hermansen, “Two-Way Acculturation: Muslim Women in America,” in Haddad, ed. Muslims of America, 188–201, and Carole Anway, Daughters of Another Path: Experiences of American Women Choosing Islam (Lee’s Summit, MO: Yawna Publications, 1996).

37. For example, the works of Jeffrey Lang, Struggling to Surrender: Some Impressions of an American Convert to Islam (Beltsville, MD: Amana Publications, 1995) and Even Angels Ask: A Journey to Islam in America (Beltsville, MD: Amana Publications, 1997).

38. Aminah B. McCloud and Frederick Thaufeer al-Din, A Question of Faith for Muslim Inmates (Chicago: ABC International Group, 1999).

39. Robert Dannin, “Island in a Sea of Ignorance: Dimensions of the Prison Mosque,” in Metcalf, ed., Making Muslim Space, 131–46. Quote cited is on page 131. This article is available on-line at

40. Ibid., 132.

41. Ibid., 131.

42. Earle Waugh, “Muslim Leadership and the Shaping of the Umma: Classical Tradition and Religious Tensions in the North American Setting,” in The Muslim Community in North America, ed. Baha Abu Laban and Regula Qureshi (Edmonton: University of Alberta Press, 1983).


44. Links to American Sufi websites are found at

45. On some of the sectarian communities, see Haddad, ed., with Smith, Mission to America.

46. In New Trends and Developments in the World of Islam, ed. Peter Clarke (London: Luzac Oriental Press, 1997), 155–78.

47. For background on Internet Islam, see Jon W. Anderson, “The Internet and Islam’s New Interpreters,” in New Media in the Muslim World, ed. Dale F. Eickleman and Jon W. Anderson (Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1999), 45–56, and Gary Bunt, Virtually Islamic: Computer-Mediated Communication and Cyber Islamic Environments (Cardiff: University of Wales Press, 2000).

48. Emily Wax, “The Mufti in the Chat Room: Islamic Legal Advisers Are Just a Click Away From Ancient Customs,” Washington Post, July 31, 1999, C1.


50. Islam in America (New York: Columbia University Press, 1999), 219–26.

© Oxford University Press 2007-2008. All Rights Reserved