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Elijah Muhammad and Islam$
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Herbert Berg

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780814791134

Published to NYU Press Scholarship Online: March 2016

DOI: 10.18574/nyu/9780814791134.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM NYU Press SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.nyu.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of NYU Press Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in NYSO for personal use.date: 26 September 2021

Elijah Muhammad and the Qur’an

Elijah Muhammad and the Qur’an

(p.53) 3 Elijah Muhammad and the Qur’an
Elijah Muhammad and Islam

Herbert Berg

NYU Press

Elijah Muhammad is credited with introducing the Qur'an to most African American Muslims. The earlier Moorish Science Temple's most Islamic feature was the use of the word “Koran” for the scripture “written” by its founder, Drew Ali. In that regard, the Nation of Islam was clearly much more “Islamic.” This chapter focuses on the status of the Qur'an for Elijah Muhammad and the use he made of it. A comparison between Drew Ali's Koran and Elijah Muhammad's use of the Bible and predictions of a future scripture highlight Elijah Muhammad's unique understanding of the role of the Qur'an within his formulation of Islam. His understanding of the Qur'an was not monolithic, however. As he became more familiar with the Qur'an and then experienced the negative reaction of other Muslims, his relationship to the Qur'an evolved.

Keywords:   Elijah Muhammad, Islam, Moorish Science Temple, Nation of Islam, African American Muslims, Drew Ali, Qur'an, Koran

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