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The Muslims of Latin America and the Caribbean

Ken Chitwood
The Muslims of Latin America and the Caribbean
ISBN: 978-1-62637-948-0
ISBN: 978-1-62637-981-7
2021/285 pages/LC: 2021016143
Also of interest: The Jews of Latin America, 3rd ed. by Judith Laikin Elkin
"An important contribution to the making of a field of study, which is just now beginning to take shape."—Thiago Henrique Mota, European Review of Latin American and Caribbean Studies

"A profound exploration of the hidden history of Muslims in the Americas and beyond. . . . An eye-opening book." —Juan Galvan, Caribbean Conjunctures

"[Offers] new perspectives on the contribution of Islam to the culture of Latin America and the Caribbean [and also] sheds an important light on the Muslim minority [there] in the context of Global Islam." —Atilla Kus, International Journal of Latin American Religions


Winner of the Religion News Association's Award for Best Nonfiction Religion Book!

The "Muslim World" is often narrowly conceived as tied to the Middle East and North Africa, or more broadly as encompassing Africa’s Sahel region, South and Southeast Asia, and parts of the Balkans. But what about Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC)? It is this question that inspired Ken Chitwood's book.

Chitwood traces the story of Muslims in LAC: their deep roots in the region, as well as the current connections among the multiple networks of people, ideas, economies, politics, and religion that extend across the Americas and beyond. Moving from pre-Columbian encounters to the present day, his rich account leaves the reader with a deeper understanding of an integral, but little recognized, part of the Americas and global Islam.


Ken Chitwood is senior research fellow at the Muslim Philanthropy Initiative, Indiana University. He is also an award-winning religion newswriter with bylines in Newsweek, Salon, The Washington Post, Religion News Service, The Los Angeles Times, and Christianity Today.


  • Putting Muslims on the Map in Latin America and the Caribbean.
  • The Question of Pre-Columbian Contact.
  • Los Moros, Spain, and the Making of the "New World."
  • Enslaved Muslims and Their Enduring Legacy.
  • Indentured Servants and Immigrants.
  • Halal in Brazil and the Global Muslim Economy.
  • Islamophobia and the War on Terror.
  • Seeking a Better World in Mexico.
  • The Contest for Sunni Hegemony in the Caribbean.
  • The Dream of a Latinx Muslim Homeland.
  • The Americas as Part of a Broader "Muslim World."