Servants of Allah: African Muslims Enslaved in the Americas by Sylviane A. Diouf

By Sylviane A. Diouf

Publish yr note: First released November 1st, 1998
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Servants of Allah provides a heritage of African Muslims, following them from West Africa to the Americas. even supposing many think that what Muslim religion they introduced with them to the Americas was once quick absorbed into the recent Christian milieu, as Sylviane A. Diouf demonstrates during this meticulously-researched, groundbreaking quantity, Islam flourished in the course of slavery on a wide scale. She information how, even whereas enslaved, many Muslims controlled to persist with lots of the precepts in their faith. Literate, city, and well-traveled, they drew on their association, team spirit and the energy in their ideals to play a big half within the so much famous slave uprisings. yet for all their accomplishments and contributions to the historical past and cultures of the African Diaspora, the Muslims were mostly neglected.

Servants of Allah --a selection 1999 remarkable educational Title--illuminates the position of Islam within the lives of either person practitioners and groups, and indicates that although the faith didn't live on within the Americas in its orthodox shape, its mark are available in definite religions, traditions, and creative creations of individuals of African descent. This fifteenth anniversary variation has been up-to-date to incorporate new fabrics and research, a assessment of advancements within the box, customers for brand spanking new learn, and new illustrations.

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Extra info for Servants of Allah: African Muslims Enslaved in the Americas (15th Anniversary Edition)

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62 Not every conflict was provoked by the Western demand for slaves. Africa had its own political wars — for succession, control, expansion, consolidation — and politico-religious conflicts, which were completely independent of the European presence. Most wars in West Africa were political or religious, but as with the economic wars, the prisoners were condemned to enslavement and some were sold to the Europeans. A succession conflict in Senegal illustrates how purely local events could be closely linked to the transatlantic slave trade and bring vast numbers of Muslims to the New World.

Medieval Europe traded in European slaves on a large scale. Slavs, Irish, Welsh, Greeks, Scandinavians, Russians, and Turks furnished the bulk of the enslaved population across Europe up to the middle of the fifteenth century. They worked as domestics, in mines, on farms, on the sugar plantations of the Portuguese, and in the harbors. Just as in Africa, most European slaves were obtained through raids and wars. As was also true in Africa, slavery in Europe was justified on the grounds that the slaves were different: they followed a religion other than that of their captors or belonged to a different ethnic group.

Religious wars or jihad, came late — in the eighteenth and especially the nineteenth century — and Islam was diffused not by outsiders (except in the early years) but by indigenous traders, clerics, and rulers. These carriers of the faith were natives and therefore identified culturally and socially as well as ethnically with the potential converts. Some fundamental features of traditional religions and customs, such as the ritual immolation of animals, circumcision, polygamy, communal prayers, divination, and amulet making, also were present in Islam.

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