Understanding Salafi Muslims, the Bible in African-American Art, and More

Salafis believe they are following the ideals of the Salaf, Arabic for “ancestors.” For them, these first generations of Muslims practiced a faith that was pure.

Salafi Muslims: Following the Ancestors of Islam February 21, 2013
You’ve probably heard the stories about extremist Salafi Muslims, who have destroyed shrines in Mali and are calling for strict Shariah law in Egypt. While it’s true that Salafis around the world share a common goal of returning to the ideals of early Islam, Islamic scholar Yasir Qadhi cautions the group is far from monolithic.

When Africans were brought to the Americas as slaves, they were forbidden to read and write. But those rules didn’t stop them, and one of the first books they got their hands on was the Bible. In it, they found a framework to reinterpret their own stories and histories. We sit down with the curator of a new art exhibition called “Ashe to Amen: African Americans and Biblical Imagery.” It’s on display at the Museum of Biblical Art in New York through May 26.
Dr. Leslie King Hammond, founding director of the Center for Race and Culture at the Maryland Institute College of Art

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