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Black MeccaThe African Muslims of Harlem$
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Zain Abdullah

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780195314250

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2010

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195314250.001.0001

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America Dreaming

America Dreaming

(p.15) 2 America Dreaming
Black Mecca

Zain Abdullah (Contributor Webpage)

Oxford University Press

Thousands are making a mass exodus from West Africa. Attempting to escape perpetual unemployment in their home countries, many are taking drastic measures to reach Spain or other European nations for the promise of better economic conditions. Most die in rough seas, as they travel with human traffickers in pateras, small fishing boats ill equipped for the journey. On a catamaran, fourteen Senegalese Muslim men made an unprecedented Atlantic voyage bound for New York, and they made it, but just barely. Within the larger context of West African Muslim immigration, this chapter discusses the perilous odyssey of these Muslim sailors, the push of their familial obligations, and the pull of the American dream.

Keywords:   exodus, American dream, Spain, African Muslim, human traffickers, West Africa, Atlantic voyage, unemployment, familial obligation, pateras

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