The Taqwacores

The Taqwacores


9781846590177 March 2007 Paperback 256pp

About the Book

Yusef is living in Buffalo, New York, with a group of Muslim punks. A pot-smoking mohawked Sufi called Jehangir plays the rooftop call to prayer on his electric guitar, while debates rage downstairs about the Quranic sources for Iggy Pop songs.

With a living-room serving as mosque by day and hosting punk parties by night, and a hole in the wall marking the direction of Mecca, Yusef’s friends are all dealing with what it means to be young and Muslim in modern-day America.

Amidst all this, Yusef embarks on a fascinating, clumsy journey towards faith and love in this surprising and unsettling read.

About the Author

Michael Muhammad Knight grew up Irish Catholic and converted to Islam aged 16 after reading Malcolm X's autobiography. He originally published The Taqwacores(Telegram) by hand on photocopiers to distribute from his car in mosque parking lots. Since then the novel has been confiscated in Malaysia, taught in numerous colleges and universities and cited as an influence in the American Muslim woman-led prayer movement.


'Sooner or later Punk and Islam were fated to meet and produce strange offspring. This excellent novel represents the first blast of the trumpet – loud and utterly unique.'
Hakim Bey, New Internationalist

'A manifesto for the Muslim punk movement'

'The Hunter S. Thompson of Islamic Literature ... an easy, funny read but, at another level and without labouring the point, it's also profoundly challenging.'
Brian Whitaker, Guardian

'An absolutely fascinating book ... Michael Muhammed Knight has bravely written what could well become an essential text.'
Beat Motel

'Michael Muhammad Knight is an excellent, intelligent writer ... The Taqwacores is a highly engaging read ... entertaining and thought-provoking.'
Rock Sound Magazine