Abstract and Keywords
This essay focuses on Warith Deen Mohammed’s early life and his leadership of the Nation of Islam (NOI). Warith Deen Mohammed inherited the mantle of NOI leadership from his father in 1975. The essay provides a background on NOI through 1975, particularly how it shaped the image of Islam and Muslims in America for much of the twentieth century and attracted African Americans who embraced Islam as an alternative to “white” religions. It then explores the evolution of Imam Warith Deen Mohammed and his community, with emphasis on how his childhood molded him and the significance of what he accomplished between 1933 and 1974. Furthermore, it examines the rise of mainstream Islam and universalism under Warith Deen Mohammed’s leadership, as well as his transformation from community leader to representative of American Muslims in 1981–2008 and his family life and dynamics before concluding with an assessment of the NOI today
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