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Salim Muwakkil

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Information about Salim Muwakkil

Profile image of Salim Muwakkil

Profession

Category:
MediaMakers
Occupation(s):
Magazine Editor
Newspaper Columnist

Favorites

Favorite Color:
Blue
Favorite Food:
Swordfish
Favorite Time of Year:
Summer
Favorite Vacation Spot:
Negril, Jamaica, Entebbe, Uganda
Favorite Quote:
None

Birthplace

Born:
1/20/1947
Birth Location:
New York, New York

Profession

Category:
MediaMakers
Occupation(s):
Magazine Editor
Newspaper Columnist

Favorites

Favorite Color:
Blue
Favorite Food:
Swordfish
Favorite Time of Year:
Summer
Favorite Vacation Spot:
Negril, Jamaica, Entebbe, Uganda
Favorite Quote:
None

Birthplace

Born:
1/20/1947
Birth Location:
New York
See how Salim Muwakkil is related to other HistoryMakers

Biography

Journalist and political commentator Salim Muwakkil was born on January 20, 1947, in New York City. Given the birth name of Alonzo Canady, Jr., he was the oldest of four children born to Alonzo Canady and Bertha Merriman. He attended Linden High School in Linden, New Jersey, graduating in 1964. Upon graduation, he enrolled in the U.S. Air Force, serving five years as an administration specialist.

After the completion of his Air Force service in 1969, Muwakkil returned to New Jersey and enrolled at Rutgers University, where he earned a B.A. in political science in 1973. Shortly before graduating, he started working as a news writer for the Associated Press' bureau in Newark. The following year he became the copy editor for Muhammad Speaks-Bilalian News , the largest black-owned publication in the country. During his time there, which lasted until July 1977, he also became the managing editor of the newspaper, and in 1975 officially changed his name.

By 1980, Muwakkil was living in Chicago, working as a writer and editor for the U.S. Department of Housing and Development. He was also serving as a freelance writer, contributing to various publications such as the New York Times and Washington Post. In 1984, he became the senior editor of In These Times. Muwakkil later became a contributing columnist for the Chicago Sun-Times and the Chicago Tribune. He has also served as host of the “Salim Muwakkil Show” on WVON-AM since 2007.

Muwakkil is the author of Harold!, a book chronicling Harold Washington’s historic tenure as mayor of Chicago. He has also contributed to five other books and has been a frequent guest on Chicago Tonight, a public affairs program, and on Beyond the Beltway, a nationally syndicated political radio program. He has provided political commentary for various other radio and television shows, served as an adjunct professor at the Art Institute of Chicago and Northwestern University, and is the recipient of numerous awards and honors. Muwakkil is married and the father of two children. He resides in Chicago.

Salim Muwakkil was interviewed by The HistoryMakers on March 10, 2003.

See how Salim Muwakkil is related to other HistoryMakers
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  • Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Salim Muwakkil's interview
  • Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Salim Muwakkil lists his favorites
  • Tape: 1 Story: 3 - Salim Muwakkil talks about his ancestor named the "Guinea Sultan"
  • Tape: 1 Story: 4 - Salim Muwakkil describes his parents' family backgrounds
  • Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Salim Muwakkil describes his father's personality
  • Tape: 1 Story: 6 - Salim Muwakkil describes his mother's family
  • Tape: 1 Story: 7 - Salim Muwakkil describes his mother's personality
  • Tape: 1 Story: 8 - Salim Muwakkil describes the sights, sounds, and smells of his childhood
  • Tape: 1 Story: 9 - Salim Muwakkil describes moving to New Jersey when he was eleven
  • Tape: 1 Story: 10 - Salim Muwakkil describes listening to Malcolm X speak in Harlem Square
  • Tape: 1 Story: 11 - Salim Muwakkil describes his experience as a teenage in Harlem, New York
  • Tape: 2 Story: 1 - Salim Muwakkil talks about his early awareness of the Civil Rights Movement
  • Tape: 2 Story: 2 - Salim Muwakkil describes his experience at St. Charles Borromeo
  • Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Salim Muwakkil talks about his experience at Linden High School and singing in doo-wop groups
  • Tape: 2 Story: 4 - Salim Muwakkil describes his experience playing football at Linden High School
  • Tape: 2 Story: 5 - Salim Muwakkil describes his enlistment in the U.S. Air Force after graduating from high school in 1964
  • Tape: 2 Story: 6 - Salim Muwakkil describes being stationed in Germany with the U.S. Air Force in 1965
  • Tape: 2 Story: 7 - Salim Muwakkil describes his experience at Robins Air Force Base after the assassination of Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
  • Tape: 2 Story: 8 - Salim Muwakkil describes his involvement with the Black Panther Party in 1969
  • Tape: 2 Story: 9 - Salim Muwakkil describes joining the Nation of Islam in 1970
  • Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Salim Muwakkil describes writing for the Associated Press and Muhammad Speaks
  • Tape: 3 Story: 2 - Salim Muwakkil describes his experience writing for Muhammad Speaks in Chicago, Illinois
  • Tape: 3 Story: 3 - Salim Muwakkil describes the changes within the Nation of Islam after the death of Elijah Muhammad in 1975, pt. 1
  • Tape: 3 Story: 4 - Salim Muwakkil describes the changes within the Nation of Islam after the death of Elijah Muhammad in 1975, pt. 2
  • Tape: 3 Story: 5 - Salim Muwakkil describes the changing of the Nation of Islam, pt. 1
  • Tape: 3 Story: 6 - Salim Muwakkil describes the changing of the Nation of Islam, pt. 2
  • Tape: 3 Story: 7 - Salim Muwakkil describes his first story with the Chicago Reader
  • Tape: 3 Story: 8 - Salim Muwakkil describes the dynamic between followers of Wallace Muhammad and followers of HistoryMaker and Minister Louis Farrakhan
  • Tape: 3 Story: 9 - Salim Muwakkil describes the relationship between the Nation of Islam and other non-orthodox Islamic movements
  • Tape: 4 Story: 1 - Salim Muwakkil describes the growth of his writing persona at the Chicago Reader
  • Tape: 4 Story: 2 - Salim Muwakkil reflects upon the activities of the Black Panther Party and Black Liberation Army
  • Tape: 4 Story: 3 - Salim Muwakkil describes his freelance writing between 1977 and 1983
  • Tape: 4 Story: 4 - Salim Muwakkil describes In These Times newspaper
  • Tape: 4 Story: 5 - Salim Muwakkil shares his opinion about the popularity of black nationalist ideologies, pt. 1
  • Tape: 4 Story: 6 - Salim Muwakkil shares his opinion about the popularity of black nationalist ideologies, pt. 2
  • Tape: 4 Story: 7 - Salim Muwakkil describes his experience writing for In These Times newspaper
  • Tape: 4 Story: 8 - Salim Muwakkil describes his career writing for In These Times newspaper, pt. 1
  • Tape: 5 Story: 1 - Salim Muwakkil describes his career writing for In These Times newspaper, pt. 2
  • Tape: 5 Story: 2 - Salim Muwakkil shares his opinion regarding contemporary progressive politics
  • Tape: 5 Story: 3 - Salim Muwakkil describes writing for the Chicago Sun-Times and Chicago Tribune
  • Tape: 5 Story: 4 - Salim Muwakkil describes the reputations and biases of the Chicago Tribune and the Chicago Sun-Times
  • Tape: 5 Story: 5 - Salim Muwakkil describes the treatment of the Iraq War in the press
  • Tape: 5 Story: 6 - Salim Muwakkil describes why his column with the Chicago Tribune was cancelled
  • Tape: 5 Story: 7 - Salim Muwakkil describes his readers' responses to his leaving the Chicago Tribune
  • Tape: 5 Story: 8 - Salim Muwakkil describes his hopes and concerns for the African American community
  • Tape: 6 Story: 1 - Salim Muwakkil describes the black community's high incarceration rates
  • Tape: 6 Story: 2 - Salim Muwakkil talks about the legalization of drugs
  • Tape: 6 Story: 3 - Salim Muwakkil talks about the Iraq War
  • Tape: 6 Story: 4 - Salim Muwakkil describes his plans for the future
  • Tape: 6 Story: 5 - Salim Muwakkil reflects on what he would have done differently in his career
  • Tape: 6 Story: 6 - Salim Muwakkil reflects upon his legacy
  • Tape: 6 Story: 7 - Salim Muwakkil describes how he would like to be remembered
  • Tape: 6 Story: 8 - Salim Muwakkil narrates his photographs