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Islam in African History

Over a quarter of the world’s Muslim population (estimated at over one billion and a half) lives in Africa and Islam is increasingly playing a central role in shaping African societies.  This course is designed to provide the students with a broad understanding of the history of Islam in Africa.

The focus will be mostly on West Africa, but we will also look at developments in the northern and eastern regions of the continent. We will examine the process of islamization in Africa and the variety of Islamic experiences on the continent. Topics include the ways in which Islam came and adapted to Africa, the relationships of Islam to trade and state formation, Islamic education and literacy, the status of women, Muslim responses to European colonial domination, Islamic mysticism, and the contemporary development of radical Islamic thought and practices.

Cheikh Anta Babou [click to view bio]
Associate Professor of History