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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Reflections on historical and contemporary Islam in Ethiopia and Somalia: a comparative and contrastive overview
Author:Ahmed, HusseinISNI
Periodical:Journal of Ethiopian Studies (ISSN 0304-2243)
Geographic terms:Ethiopia
political history
External link:https://www.jstor.org/stable/41988230
Abstract:What was the relationship between the State and Islam in Ethiopia and the Horn, both in the past and present? In the former, it played a significant role in the formation of States and as a mobilizing force for political and military action in both mediaeval and postmediaeval times, and the Muslim States thus created promoted it. In the latter, however, Islam has been used by political factions to establish their dominance. In Somalia, not until the 19th century did Islam serve as a means of creating quasi-centralized States. Islam has not succeeded in forging political unification because of clan/tribal diversity and rivalry, and due to the predominant pastoral/nomadic ethos and economy. Both in the past and at present, Islam in Ethiopia and the Horn of Africa, mainly Somalia, reflects the diversity of the region in terms of historical experience and sociopolitical and economic structures, the impact of the religion and colonialism on the indigenous States and peoples, and their aspirations. This can explain the differences in the role and image of Islam in the two entities. Notes, ref. [ASC Leiden abstract]