Canceled - The Princess and the Prophet: The Secret History of Magic, Race, and Moorish Muslims in America


The Newberry has been closely monitoring developments related to COVID-19. To enable our community to follow the standards of social distancing mandated by public health officials, we are canceling this program. Please visit www.newberry.org/covid19 for more information and for regular updates regarding Newberry operations.

In his new book The Princess and the Prophet: The Secret History of Magic, Race, and Moorish Muslims in America, Jacob S. Dorman draws on 26 archives and over 14,500 archival images to uncover the hidden history of the founder of the precursor of the Nation of Islam, Noble Drew Ali.

In this Meet the Author event, Dorman will talk with Omar McRoberts (University of Chicago) about the new book and its relevance to the history of Chicago.

About the Speakers:

Jacob S. Dorman is associate professor of history at the University of Nevada, Reno. His scholarship uses microhistorical techniques and deep archival research to solve historical mysteries and illuminate the cultural history of the Gilded Age and Progressive Era. In addition to The Princess and the Prophet (Beacon Press, 2020), he is the author of Chosen People: The Rise of American Black Israelite Religions (Oxford University Press, 2013), which won the American Historical Association’s Wesley-Logan Prize, the Albert J. Raboteau Prize in Africana Religions, and the Bryon Caldwell Smith Book Prize.

Omar M. McRoberts is an associate professor in the Department of Sociology at the University of Chicago. McRoberts's scholarly and teaching interests include the sociology of religion, urban sociology, urban poverty, race, and collective action. His first book, Streets of Glory: Church and Community in a Black Urban Neighborhood, is based on an ethnographic study of religious life in Four Corners, a poor, predominantly black neighborhood in Boston containing twenty-nine congregations. McRoberts is currently conducting a study of black religious responses to, and influences on, social welfare policy since the New Deal, culminating with George W. Bush's Office of Faith Based and Community Initiatives.

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