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Book Book Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Horn and crescent: cultural change and traditional Islam on the East African coast, 800-1900
Author:Pouwels, Randall L.ISNI
Series:African studies series (ISSN 0065-406X)
City of publisher:Cambridge
Publisher:Cambridge University Press
Geographic terms:East Africa
Subjects:Islamic history
Abstract:This synoptic history of traditional Islam on the East African coast, primarily the coast of Kenya and Zanzibar, especially involves the indigenous people of the coast and thus focuses on the Swahili. It is divided informally into four parts. The first includes ch. 1 and 2. These constitute an interpretive introduction to the origins and early development of Swahili culture. Here and elsewhere, the author endeavours to explain Swahili as the result of a rough equilibrium which has been maintained between African and Arab inspiration. Ch. 3 presents and analyses new oral data from the Lamu region where 'modern' Islamic culture on the coast first flourished. Part 3, consisting of ch. 4 and 5, is a general discussion of the overall intellectual, social and political 'arrondissement' in which coastal Islam was embedded in the 18th and 19th centuries. The entire second half of the book comprises part four. It covers the 19th and early 20th century, the period of the Zanzibar Sultanate. The period is the last of the three major Arabizing phases on the coast, a period of extensive Arab immigration. The dominance of a Zanzibar based ulama and growing literacy among local peoples distinguished the period. These chapters (6 through 10) outline the nature of Zanzibar cultural influences on the coast, with additional attention given to the actions and reactions of Swahili Muslims to these influences.