Besheer Mohamed is a senior researcher at Pew Research Center. He is involved in the design and implementation of many of the Center’s domestic religion polls. He specializes in studying religious minorities in the U.S., with a specific focus on Muslim Americans. Mohamed received a doctorate in sociology as well as a master’s degree in Middle East studies from the University of Chicago. He is the author of “Hybrid identity among Black American Muslims,” as well as “Muslim Immigrants: Hurt by Recession but Not Complaining.” He has worked on the Center’s surveys of U.S. Muslims, Mormons and Jews as well as its polling on attitudes toward religious groups. Mohamed has presented his work at academic conferences and been interviewed by a variety of broadcast and print media.
Black Muslims account for a fifth of all U.S. Muslims, and about half are converts to Islam
About half of black Muslims are converts to Islam, a relatively high conversion level. Black Muslims, like black Americans overall, have high levels of religious commitment.
Republicans account for a small but steady share of U.S. Muslims
Many more U.S. Muslims identify with or lean toward the Democratic Party than the GOP (66% vs. 13%), but the share who are Republican has held steady over the last 10 years, including after the election of President Donald Trump.
Black Millennials are more religious than other Millennials
Black Millennials are more likely than nonblack Millennials, for example, to say they pray at least daily and attend religious services at least weekly.
Most U.S. Muslims observe Ramadan by fasting during daylight hours
More Muslim adults say they fast during Ramadan than say they pray five times a day or attend mosque weekly.
Black Americans are more likely than overall public to be Christian, Protestant
Nearly eight-in-ten black Americans identify as Christian, compared with 70% of whites, 77% of Latinos and just 34% of Asian Americans.
The share of Americans who leave Islam is offset by those who become Muslim
About a quarter of adults who were raised Muslim no longer identify as members of the faith. But Islam gains about as many converts as it loses.
New estimates show U.S. Muslim population continues to grow
An estimated 3.45 million Muslims of all ages were living in the United States in 2017, accounting for about 1.1% of the country’s total population.
American-born Muslims more likely than Muslim immigrants to see negatives in U.S. society
While Muslims born in the United States and their immigrant counterparts share a pride in being American, U.S.-born Muslims are less likely than immigrants to feel comfortable with their place in broader American society.
Muslims more likely than Americans overall to say blacks lack equal rights in U.S.
Two-thirds of Muslims in the United States say the country needs to continue making changes to give blacks equal rights with whites.
A new estimate of the U.S. Muslim population
Pew Research Center estimates that there were about 3.3 million Muslims of all ages living in the United States in 2015. This means that Muslims made up about 1% of the total U.S. population.