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Journey into America

3.95  ·  Rating Details ·  56 Ratings  ·  11 Reviews

Nearly seven million Muslims live in the United States today, and their relations with non-Muslims are strained. Many Americans associate Islam with figures such as Osama bin Laden, and they worry about "homegrown terrorists." To shed light on this increasingly important religious group and counter mutual distrust, renowned scholar Akbar Ahmed conducted the most comprehens

Kindle Edition, 530 pages
Published (first published May 30th 2010)
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May 01, 2011 Chris rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: real-world
This book is too long! At times it is engaging, heartfelt, and insightful. At other times it is pompous, preachy, and verbose. Didn't agree with everything he said. Short shrift given to the intolerance of Islam when it comes to other religions preaching on their turf. Ahmed is an advocate for dialogue and this book certainly succeeds in that regard. Still haven't figured him out. He's an accomplished man, who likes to remind you of his success too. Book is replete with photos of him. He seems t ...more
Arjun Mishra
Jul 23, 2011 Arjun Mishra rated it liked it
Shelves: politics
I did not realize exactly how famous Akbar Ahmed is as an anthropologist. I see his name around random articles I find on the internet. Regardless, this is an important book and his stature allowed him to interview some powerful people (Grand Wizard of the KKK, former diplomats).

Too many books are hailed as the "modern de Toqueville." It is an annoying moniker that is attached to books that attempt any kind of ethnography of the United States. There was one de Toqueville and there has not been
Mar 07, 2011 Sara rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: txtbook, religion
I will admit that I did skim most of this book in order to keep to my reading deadline & be able to write a review. The book was very good and the study very interesting.
Akbar Ahmed starts off his book by talking about how he was interrupted and repeatedly attacked by the members of a mosque where he was talking about the importance of talking to non-Muslims in the community and attempting to bridge the peace between the different cultures. Ahmed also mentioned that his two companions for t
Written as an account of an anthropological excursion into Muslim communities in the United States, this book makes a clear and useful connection between the study of Islam in America and the reality of American identity (actually identities). The book opens with the author's identification of the three American identities, which, according to the author's interpretation, started with the Plymouth Rock: primordial identity, pluralist identity, and predator identity. Throughout the book, the auth ...more
Nov 07, 2012 Flora rated it really liked it
Shelves: nonfiction
Dense, and kind of depressing. I feel like this is the sort of reading that gets assigned in college. I also feel compelled to write a paper just to process all I've read.

It's interesting to see an outsider's interpretation of American history. He's ludicrously high on Kennedy, and has a bit of a fixation with Plymouth (in a very academic context) and the Scots-Irish. The historical highlights are also more racially tinged.

I really appreciated the team's breadth of demographic coverage. I learne
Apr 05, 2012 Diane rated it liked it
This book claims to be about the Muslim experience in America, and American attitudes towards Islam, in the decade since 9/11. The author spent a good deal of time traveling, interviewing people, and taking surveys, all of which is presented in the book. This is its greatest strength. He provides empirical insights that I haven't seen elsewhere. Unfortunately, he spends more than half the book on an anthropological look at America. While some of his insights are good, I particularly liked his an ...more
Ken Moten
Feb 27, 2011 Ken Moten rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A very interesting and detailed book on Islam in America. I got this book late in 2010 and have just finished reading it so it would be interesting to see Dr. Ahmed do a follow up to this (and by exstention his previous book Journey Into Islam: The Crisis of Globalization) on how the Arab Spring has had, if any, on the perception of muslims in the US and abroad.
Apr 23, 2014 Angela rated it really liked it
Oh my college days...this book definitely reminded me of those college years where I had to conduct my own research. Overall this is a good book. It describes how people now see Muslims, before and after 9/11. I am definitely considering buying this book (because I originally checked it out at the library, and it took me a while to get through it). I would like to re-read and highlight a few areas that interested me. This is a very informative book and I recommend everyone read it.
I was distracted, and never finished it. Curious glimpses into a world foreign to me, perhaps I'll pick it up again sometime.
Feb 16, 2011 Carisa rated it really liked it
Long but worth the read. I agree with those that have posted that everyone in the US needs to read. Ahmed has very good points that everyone needs to think about, we have much to do as Americans.
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