Islam and the prayer economy: history and authority in a Malian town

TitleIslam and the prayer economy: history and authority in a Malian town
Publication TypeBook
Year of Publication2005
AuthorsB.F. Soares
Series titleInternational African library, ISSN 0951-1377 ; 32
Pagination1 - 306
Date Published2005///
PublisherEdinburgh University Press/University of Michigan Press
Place PublishedEdinburgh/Ann Arbor
Publication Languageeng
ISBN Number0-7486-2285-3
Keywordscolonialism, cults, history, Islam, Islamic history, Mali, Sufism

At a time when so-called fundamentalism has become the privileged analytical frame for understanding Muslim societies past and present, this study offers an alternative perspective on Islam. In a combination of anthropology, history and social theory, the author explores Islam and Muslim practice in the town of Nioro du Sahel, Mali, an important Islamic religious centre since the mid-19th century. The book is divided into two parts: 1. History, and 2. Authority. The first part deals with Islam and authority before the colonial period, colonialism and after, and saints and Sufi orders, notably the Hamawiyya and the Tijaniyya. The second part discusses the contemporary configuration of religious practice in Nioro, paying attention to Islamic esoteric sciences, the development of a prayer economy, so-called religious reform, particularly the activities and influence of Muslim reformists, and the importance of the secular State and the development of the public sphere. In the concluding chapter, the author returns to the question of changing ideas about and practices of Islam, and some of the ongoing tensions around Islam and authority in Mali and particularly Nioro as a profoundly transformed religious centtre. [ASC Leiden abstract]


Bibliogr.: p. [279]-298. - Met gloss., index, noten

Citation Key1124