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Thursday, September 3, 2015

Where Islam Meets America

Rollo Romig reviewed Light Without Fire by Scott Korb in the May 20, 2013 issue of The New Yorker.
"Back in 2000, a Catholic nun named Marianne Farina noticed a gap in the world of religious higher education. She issued a challenge to her friend, a forty-two-year-old Muslim teacher named Sheikh Hamza Yusuf. 'You’re one-fourth of the world’s population. Where are the Muslim colleges?' she asked. 'You need to do it.' Yusuf, an Irish-American convert who wears horn-rimmed glasses and a Vandyke beard, is perhaps the most influential Islamic scholar in the Western world, and he took Sister Farina’s question seriously. Three years ago, in Berkeley, California, he joined with Imam Zaid Shakir, an tall, slender Oakland-born black convert whose influence rivals Yusuf’s, and a Muslim academic named Dr. Hatem Bazian to found Zaytuna College, the first Muslim liberal-arts college in the United States. (Zaytuna is Arabic for olive tree.)"

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