The Princess and the Prophet: The Secret History of Magic, Race, and Moorish Muslims in America Jacob S. Dorman

The Princess and the Prophet: The Secret History of Magic, Race, and Moorish Muslims in America

Author: Jacob S. Dorman
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Book Title
The Princess and the Prophet: The Secret History of Magic, Race, and Moorish Muslims in America
Author
Jacob S. Dorman
ISBN
9780807067260
The just-discovered story of how two enigmatic circus performers and the cultural ferment of the Gilded Age sparked the Black Muslim movement in America Delving into new archives and uncovering fascinating biographical narratives, secret rituals, and hidden identities, historian Jacob Dorman explains why thousands of Americans were enthralled by the Islamic Orient, and why some came to see Islam as a global antiracist movement uniquely suited to people of African descent in an era of European imperialism, Jim Crow segregation, and officially sanctioned racism. The Princess and the Prophet tells the story of the Black Broadway performer who, among the world of Arabian acrobats and equestrians, Muslim fakirs, and Wild West shows, discovered in Islam a greater measure of freedom and dignity, and a rebuttal to the racism and parochialism of white America. Overturning the received wisdom that the prophet was born on the East Coast, Dorman has discovered that Noble Drew Ali was born Walter Brister in Kentucky. With the help of his wife, a former lion tamer and "Hindoo" magician herself, Brister renamed himself Prophet Noble Drew Ali and founded the predecessor of the Nation of Islam, the Moorish Science Temple of America, in the 1920s. With an array of profitable businesses, the "Moors" built a nationwide following of thousands of dues-paying members, swung Chicago elections, and embedded themselves in Chicago's dominant Republican political machine at the height of Prohibition racketeering, only to see their sect descend into infighting in 1929 that likely claimed the prophet's life. This fascinating untold story reveals that cultures grow as much from imagination as inheritance, and that breaking down the artificial silos around various racial and religious cultures helps to understand not only America's hidden past but also its polycultural present.Binding Type: HardcoverAuthor: Jacob S. DormanPublisher: Beacon PressPublished: 03/03/2020ISBN: 9780807067260Pages: 304Weight: 1.40lbsSize: 9.10h x 6.30w x 1.30dReview Citations: Publishers Weekly 11/25/2019Kirkus Reviews 12/15/2019Library Journal 01/01/2020 pg. 78Booklist 02/01/2020 pg. 4
The just-discovered story of how two enigmatic circus performers and the cultural ferment of the Gilded Age sparked the Black Muslim movement in America

Delving into new archives and uncovering fascinating biographical narratives, secret rituals, and hidden identities, historian Jacob Dorman explains why thousands of Americans were enthralled by the Islamic Orient, and why some came to see Islam as a global antiracist movement uniquely suited to people of African descent in an era of European imperialism, Jim Crow segregation, and officially sanctioned racism.

The Princess and the Prophet tells the story of the Black Broadway performer who, among the world of Arabian acrobats and equestrians, Muslim fakirs, and Wild West shows, discovered in Islam a greater measure of freedom and dignity, and a rebuttal to the racism and parochialism of white America. Overturning the received wisdom that the prophet was born on the East Coast, Dorman has discovered that Noble Drew Ali was born Walter Brister in Kentucky. With the help of his wife, a former lion tamer and "Hindoo" magician herself, Brister renamed himself Prophet Noble Drew Ali and founded the predecessor of the Nation of Islam, the Moorish Science Temple of America, in the 1920s.

With an array of profitable businesses, the "Moors" built a nationwide following of thousands of dues-paying members, swung Chicago elections, and embedded themselves in Chicago's dominant Republican political machine at the height of Prohibition racketeering, only to see their sect descend into infighting in 1929 that likely claimed the prophet's life. This fascinating untold story reveals that cultures grow as much from imagination as inheritance, and that breaking down the artificial silos around various racial and religious cultures helps to understand not only America's hidden past but also its polycultural present.

Binding Type: Hardcover
Author: Jacob S. Dorman
Publisher: Beacon Press
Published: 03/03/2020
ISBN: 9780807067260
Pages: 304
Weight: 1.40lbs
Size: 9.10h x 6.30w x 1.30d

Review Citations: Publishers Weekly 11/25/2019
Kirkus Reviews 12/15/2019
Library Journal 01/01/2020 pg. 78
Booklist 02/01/2020 pg. 4
The just-discovered story of how two enigmatic circus performers and the cultural ferment of the Gilded Age sparked the Black Muslim movement in America

Delving into new archives and uncovering fascinating biographical narratives, secret rituals, and hidden identities, historian Jacob Dorman explains why thousands of Americans were enthralled by the Islamic Orient, and why some came to see Islam as a global antiracist movement uniquely suited to people of African descent in an era of European imperialism, Jim Crow segregation, and officially sanctioned racism.

The Princess and the Prophet tells the story of the Black Broadway performer who, among the world of Arabian acrobats and equestrians, Muslim fakirs, and Wild West shows, discovered in Islam a greater measure of freedom and dignity, and a rebuttal to the racism and parochialism of white America. Overturning the received wisdom that the prophet was born on the East Coast, Dorman has discovered that Noble Drew Ali was born Walter Brister in Kentucky. With the help of his wife, a former lion tamer and "Hindoo" magician herself, Brister renamed himself Prophet Noble Drew Ali and founded the predecessor of the Nation of Islam, the Moorish Science Temple of America, in the 1920s.

With an array of profitable businesses, the "Moors" built a nationwide following of thousands of dues-paying members, swung Chicago elections, and embedded themselves in Chicago's dominant Republican political machine at the height of Prohibition racketeering, only to see their sect descend into infighting in 1929 that likely claimed the prophet's life. This fascinating untold story reveals that cultures grow as much from imagination as inheritance, and that breaking down the artificial silos around various racial and religious cultures helps to understand not only America's hidden past but also its polycultural present.

Binding Type: Hardcover
Author: Jacob S. Dorman
Publisher: Beacon Press
Published: 03/03/2020
ISBN: 9780807067260
Pages: 304
Weight: 1.40lbs
Size: 9.10h x 6.30w x 1.30d

Review Citations: Publishers Weekly 11/25/2019
Kirkus Reviews 12/15/2019
Library Journal 01/01/2020 pg. 78
Booklist 02/01/2020 pg. 4