Download A History of Race in Muslim West Africa, 1600-1960 (African by Bruce S. Hall PDF

By Bruce S. Hall

The mobilization of neighborhood rules approximately racial distinction has been very important in producing, and intensifying, civil wars that experience happened because the finish of colonial rule in all the nations that straddle the southern fringe of the Sahara desolate tract. From Sudan to Mauritania, the racial different types deployed in modern conflicts frequently hearken again to an older background within which blackness will be equated with slavery and non-blackness with predatory and uncivilized banditry. This e-book strains the advance of arguments approximately race over a interval of greater than 350 years in a single very important position alongside the southern fringe of the Sahara barren region: the Niger Bend in northern Mali. utilizing Arabic records held in Timbuktu, in addition to neighborhood colonial resources in French and oral interviews, Bruce S. corridor reconstructs an African highbrow heritage of race that lengthy predated colonial conquest, and which has persisted to orient inter-African kinfolk ever due to the fact that.

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Extra resources for A History of Race in Muslim West Africa, 1600-1960 (African Studies)

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Closer geographically, Gregory Mann makes a similar point in Naive Sons: West African Veterans and France in the Twentieth Century (Durham, NC: Duke University Press, 2006), 3. 54 Bayly, Empire, 39. 22 Introduction identity that Africanist historians tell us were so important to the negotiation of colonial rule. 55 This book is not about racial identity, but about the invocation of racial arguments. I am interested in tracing the emergence and changing structures of ideas about racial difference, and the ways in which these ideas were deployed in a variety of contexts over time in the Niger Bend to make arguments about particular social and political matters.

It is clear that those he identified as whites included only people like himself: Arab expatriates from North Africa or the Middle East who resided in the commercial towns along the Sahel, most of whom were merchants.

37 Despite the absorption of some European ideas about race during the colonial period and afterward, it is difficult to avoid the impression that Sahelian racial discourses remain, in content and idiom, fundamentally African. I argue in this book that the racial arguments deployed in the contemporary Sahel are much closer to local eighteenth- and nineteenth-century formulations than to twentieth-century European racial frameworks. This, it seems to me, poses a problem for some of the generalizations found in the Africanist literature about the relative newness of ethnic and racial categories in colonial Africa.

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