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DRPS : Course Catalogue : School of History, Classics and Archaeology : Postgraduate (History, Classics and Archaeology)

Postgraduate Course: Islamic Africa (PGHC11509)

Course Outline
SchoolSchool of History, Classics and Archaeology CollegeCollege of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 11 (Postgraduate) AvailabilityAvailable to all students
SCQF Credits20 ECTS Credits10
SummaryAlthough home to a quarter of the world's Muslim population, Africa is often overlooked in conventional histories of the Islamic world. Yet African figures were critical to the emergence of Islam at its inception and have continued to play a pivotal role over the course of its growth into a "world religion." This course will explore the place of Islam in Africa and the place of Africa in Islam, introducing students to key figures, movements and moments in the more than 1,000 years of Islamic history in Africa.
Course description This course will explore the history of Islam on the African continent via a set of connected themes and case studies. Topics may include the history of schooling, trade, urbanization and architecture, as well as transformations in labour, gender relations, Sufism and the law. We will also consider the place of Islam under colonialism, the relation of Muslim intellectuals to the postcolonial state in the age of the so-called War on Terror, and the broader relevance of Islam to the study of the African Diaspora. Course materials will range from 17th-century Arabic historical chronicles and legal texts in translation to examples drawn from of 20th-century Afro-Muslim visual and sonic cultures. While tilting geographically towards West Africa, the course will also cover South Africa and the Swahili Coast. Familiarity with Arabic and other African languages is welcome but not required, and it is hoped that this course will appeal to a range of students in History, African Studies, and Islamic Studies.
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Co-requisites
Prohibited Combinations Students MUST NOT also be taking Islamic Africa (Online) (PGHC11502)
Other requirements None
Information for Visiting Students
Pre-requisitesVisiting students should have at least 3 History courses at grade B or above (or be predicted to obtain this). We will only consider University/College level courses. Applicants should note that, as with other popular courses, meeting the minimum does NOT guarantee admission.

** as numbers are limited, visiting students should contact the Visiting Student Office directly for admission to this course **
High Demand Course? Yes
Course Delivery Information
Not being delivered
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. Demonstrate an understanding of the place of Islam in African history and the place of Africa in the history of Islam.
  2. Analyse the intellectual, economic, religious, and political linkages among Muslim communities across various regions of the continent.
  3. Synthesise different methodological approaches to the study of Islam in Africa employed by not only historians, but anthropologists, political scientists, and religious and legal scholars as well.
  4. Identify historical and contemporary questions that are not adequately addressed in the extant scholarship on Islam in Africa.
  5. Gain a base knowledge of African history and the study of Islam apart from the specific intersection of "Islam and Africa."
Reading List
Rudolph T. Ware, The Walking Qur'an: Islamic Education, Embodied Knowledge, and History in West Africa

Michael A. Gomez, African Dominion: A New History of Empire in Early and Medieval West Africa

Bruce S. Hall, A History of Race in Muslim West Africa, 1600-1960

Fahad Ahmad Bishara, A Sea of Debt: Law and Economic Life in the Western Indian Ocean

Elke Stockreiter, Islamic Law, Gender, and Social Change in Post-Abolition Zanzibar

Cheikh Anta Babou, Fighting the Greater Jihad: Amadu Bamba and the Founding of the Muridiyya of Senegal, 1853-1913

Muhammad Sani Umar, Islam and Colonialism: Intellectual Responses of Muslims of Northern Nigeria to British Colonial Rule

Henri Lauzière, The Making of Salafism

Ousmane Kane, Muslim Modernity in Postcolonial Nigeria

Ousseina Alidou, Muslim Women and the Politics of Agency in Postcolonial Niger

Gabeba Baderoon, Regarding Muslims: From Slavery to Post-Apartheid

Sylviane A. Diouf, Servants of Allah: African Muslims Enslaved in the Americas
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills - The ability to accurately synthesise significant amounts of new information on unfamiliar topics.
- The ability to participate in scholarly debates by identifying and assessing competing lines of argumentation in both oral and written forms.
- The ability to work independently and as part of a group.
KeywordsNot entered
Course organiserDr Jeremy Dell
Tel: (0131 6)50 4476
Course secretaryMiss Katherine Perry
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