From Publishers Weekly
Contemporary American ReligionAs architect Akel Ismail Kahera notes in the introduction to Deconstructing the American Mosque: Space, Gender, and Aesthetics, "there is virtually no literature on the history of American mosques," so this theoretical volume makes a real contribution. It's clearly academic; on the opening page, for example, Kahera cites but does not explain Derrida's philosophy of deconstruction. But informed readers will be delighted by this sophisticated book, which posits some important questions about sacred space: Since many U.S. Muslims come from Asia, Africa and the Middle East, is there such a thing as an authentically "American" Muslim architecture? What are American mosques doing to enhance the status of women in worship? How much more symbolically important is the mosque to Muslims in America than in majority-Muslim countries? Generously illustrated and provocatively written, this thoughtful treatise will do much to increase understanding of Muslim aesthetics and religious practice in America.
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"This text will be the classic work in the field... It will be extremely useful for general Islamic studies, for studies of religion in America, and for the study of Islam in America." Aminah Beverly McCloud, Associate Professor of Islamic Studies, DePaul University, Chicago