College of Liberal Arts & Social Sciences Theses and Dissertations

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African American, muslim, race, fatherhood, islam


This is a qualitative study that explores African American Muslim father notion of fatherhood. Sixteen African American Sunni Muslims participated in the study. Over 90 percent of the research respondents are converts to Islam. These men perceive their conversion as a reclaiming of their heritage stripped from them when their African ancestors were forcibly taken from Africa and brought to America as slave. While this group of father have been omitted from researchers attention, they are integral members of the African American community. By making Islam the center of their lives these African American Muslim fathers see an active relationship with their children as being essential to their social identities as Muslim men and also as African American men. While sharing similar social challenge as the men in the general African American community these Muslim father have found marriage and commitment to their children not only as a way of fulfilling their religious obligations but also as a way of over coming those difficult challenges that most African American men face living in the United States.