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Introduction

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  05 August 2012

Kambiz GhaneaBassiri
Affiliation:
Reed College, Oregon
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Summary

The history of Islam in America begins in the context of rivalries and encounters of the Atlantic world that shaped the American republic. The presence of Muslims in the territories that eventually formed the United States of America dates back to the earliest arrivals of Europeans in the Americas. Muslims neither came to America in large numbers at that time nor did they play a primary role in colonizing the Americas. They were, however, deeply embedded in the commercial and political rivalries that led to the establishment of the Atlantic world. Given the enormous impact the European discovery of the Americas has had on the modern world, it is easy to forget that during the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries, European empires navigated the Atlantic in order to establish new trade routes that would circumvent the Mediterranean and Middle Eastern trade routes dominated at that time by Muslim empires. Subsequently, as Europeans conquered and colonized the Americas, an Atlantic world emerged relating Africa, Europe, and the Americas through a triangle of mercantile relations and imperial networks. Muslims from North and West Africa were active participants in this triangle, and many of them ended up in America as slaves. Since that time, there has been a continuous presence of Muslims in America.

At the turn of the twenty-first century, the United States is home to about three million Muslims who arguably comprise the most diverse Muslim population in any single country in the world.

Type
Chapter
Information
A History of Islam in America
From the New World to the New World Order
, pp. 1 - 8
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Print publication year: 2010

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  • Introduction
  • Kambiz GhaneaBassiri, Reed College, Oregon
  • Book: A History of Islam in America
  • Online publication: 05 August 2012
  • Chapter DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9780511780493.001
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  • Introduction
  • Kambiz GhaneaBassiri, Reed College, Oregon
  • Book: A History of Islam in America
  • Online publication: 05 August 2012
  • Chapter DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9780511780493.001
Available formats
×

Send book to Google Drive

To send content items to your account, please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account. Find out more about sending content to Google Drive.

  • Introduction
  • Kambiz GhaneaBassiri, Reed College, Oregon
  • Book: A History of Islam in America
  • Online publication: 05 August 2012
  • Chapter DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9780511780493.001
Available formats
×