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Maryam Jameelah

Birth:1934

Death:2012

An American Jewish revert to Islam, who wrote extensively on Islamic topics in the 60s and 70s, though often with a strong polemical style. In a biography she writes that her interest in Islam commenced at an early age, when, while attending a Sunday School, she wondered about the historical relationship between Jews and Arabs. She later discovered Yusuf Ali's translation and commentary of the Qur'an in a profesor's class, and her quest began in earnest. She visited Pakistan in 1962 on the invitation of Maulana Maududi. She subsequently married a Pakistani and raised a family in the country. Her sons have returned to the US. But life in Pakistan brought its own sets of challenges and setbacks. In one of her own books, 'At Home in Pakistan', Maryam acknowledged that her impression of Maududi from his letters turned out to be 'very different' from the Maududi she met after her arrival in Lahore. He was 'equally surprised and dismayed' upon meeting her. Maryam had imagined living in Lahore would be living in a traditional and orthodox Muslim society. But to her, it seemed to be far off from the goals and ideals of Maududi and his Jamat. What had begun as a quest for the truth had turned into a place of disillusionment.

Compiled by:M. Nauman Khan / Ghulam Mohiuddin/M A Sherif

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