The After Malcolm research team was established in 2013 through a partnership between professors Abbas Barzegar (Georgia State University) and Bilal King (Morehouse College) who sought to document and archive the oral histories and primary materials of African American Muslims in Atlanta. They were quickly joined by Ameer Muhammad, Zainab Ansari, and Tom Laporte, all of whom were pursuing Masters degrees at Georgia State University. Together, this core team worked with a wide variety of community members, independent scholars, and archiving experts to carry out dozens of oral histories and digitize original primary materials, never before made available to the wider public. In 2018, the Ali Vural Ak Center for Global Islamic Studies at George Mason University agreed to house the After Malcolm digital archive and serve as a platform to relaunch the original scope and mission of the After Malcolm Project.
The Black Muslim experience in America uniquely represents the shared story of American pluralism and international globalization in the modern age. Emerging from the turbulence of a racially fractured United States, the African American Muslim community, having undergone a number of transformations and transitions, now occupies an important space in the nation’s civic landscape. At a time when America faces continued social polarization, the African American Muslim community is particularly positioned to provide lessons of transformation, reconciliation, and survival in the continued quest for holistic social justice. The After Malcolm Research Collective is an ongoing and long-term project that will highlight the history of African-American Muslims in the multiple cities across America.