Dr. Umar Faruq Abd-Allah (Wymann-Landgraf) is an American Muslim,
born in 1948
to a Protestant family in Columbus, Nebraska. He grew up in Athens,
where both parents taught at the University of Georgia.
coming to Cornell, Dr. Abd-Allah read The Autobiography of Malcolm
inspired him to embrace Islam in early 1970. In 1972, he altered his
study and transferred to the University of Chicago, where he studied
Islamic Studies under Dr. Fazlur Rahman. Dr. Abd-Allah received his
with honors in 1978 for a dissertation on the origins of Islamic
Concept of ‘Amal in the Light of Maliki Legal Theory. From 1977
1982, he taught at the Universities of Windsor (Ontario), Temple,
In 1982, he left America to teach Arabic in Spain. Two years later,
appointed to the Department of Islamic Studies at King Abdul-Aziz
Jeddah, where he taught (in Arabic) Islamic studies and comparative
until 2000. During his years abroad, Dr. Abd-Allah had the
studying with a number of traditional Islamic scholars.