Muslims Beyond the Arab World: The Odyssey of Ajami and the Muridiyya

ISBN : 9780190279868

Fallou Ngom
336 Pages
156 x 235 mm
Pub date
Aug 2016
Send mail

Muslims beyond the Arab World explores the tradition of writing African languages using the Arabic script 'Ajami and the rise of the Muridiyya order of Islamic Sufi in Senegal, founded by Shaykh Ahmadu Bamba Mbakke (1853-1927). The book demonstrates how the development of the 'Ajami literary tradition and the flourishing of the Muridiyya into one of sub-Saharan Africa's most powerful and dynamic Sufi organizations are entwined. It offers a close reading of the rich hagiographic and didactic written, recited, and chanted 'Ajami texts of the Muridiyya, works largely unknown to scholars. The texts describe the life and Sufi odyssey of the order's founder, his conflicts with local rulers and Muslim clerics and the French colonial administration, and the traditions and teachings he championed that shaped the identity and practices of his followers. In analyzing these Murid 'Ajami texts, Fallou Ngom evaluates prevailing representations of the movement and offers alternative perspectives. He demonstrates how, without the knowledge of the French colonial administration, the Murids were able to use their written, recited, and chanted 'Ajami materials as an effective means of mass communication to convey the personal journey of Shaykh Ahamadu Bamba, his doctrine, the virtues he stood for and cultivated among his followers: self-reliance, strong faith, the pursuit of excellence, nonviolence, and optimism in the face of adversity. This, according to Muslims beyond the Arab World, is the source of the surprising resilience, appeal, and expansion of Muridiyya.


Note on Sources
About the Companion Website
Chapter 1: Exceptionality and Equality
Chapter 2: Ethics over Ritual
Chapter 3: Odyssey by Sea: Sanctity of Suffering I
Chapter 4: Odyssey by Land: Sanctity of Suffering II
Chapter 5: Service for Salvation
Sources and Bibliography

About the author: 

Fallou Ngom is Associate Professor of Anthropology and Director of the African Language Program at Boston University.

The price listed on this page is the recommended retail price for Japan. When a discount is applied, the discounted price is indicated as “Discount price”. Prices are subject to change without notice.