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A Muslim in Victorian AmericaThe Life of Alexander Russell Webb$
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Umar F. Abd-Allah

Print publication date: 2006

Print ISBN-13: 9780195187281

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2006

DOI: 10.1093/0195187288.001.0001

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Conclusion: Webb's Legacy

Conclusion: Webb's Legacy

(p.271) Conclusion: Webb's Legacy
A Muslim in Victorian America

Umar F. Abd‐Allah

Oxford University Press

This chapter focuses on Webb's legacy. It argues that Webb's legacy is valuable for the future of American pluralism and the emerging self-definition of its large and growing Muslim community. Sulayman Nyang defines Webb as the prototype of a “Webbian tradition” within American Islam, one that is “color-blind,” addresses itself “to the plight of all people in the world,” and is disposed to balance religious identity with American culture, creating a sense of self that is at once genuinely American and truly Islamic. As a historical generalization, Nyang's Webbian tradition may be somewhat problematic, although it is useful as a sociological concept and future ideal. Webb was not completely color-blind. He did, however, express concern for the plight of the poor and oppressed, and he certainly saw Islam as eminently compatible with an American identity.

Keywords:   Alexander Russell Webb, Islam, Muslim American, legacy, American pluralism, Sulayman Nyang

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