BEYOND RESISTANCE AND COLLABORATION: AMADU BAMBA AND THE MURIDS OF SENEGAL BY DAVID ROBINSON (Michigan State University, U.S.A.) Analysts of contemporary Senegal typically give two impressions of the Islamic brotherhood called the Muridiyya.' The first is the strong position of the brotherhood in political and economic affairs. From its anchor in the center of the peanut basin the Murids have spread into virtually every agricultural zone of western Senegal and developed a reputation as productive peanut farmers. They have also spread into the coastal cities, including the old colonial capitals of St. Louis and Dakar, and become masters in the arts of contem- porary politics. It is not inaccurate to say that France governed the peanut basin from 1920 to 1960 in conjunction with the Murid hierarchy in a kind of indirect rule reminiscent of the systems estab- lished under the sultan of Morocco and the emirs of Northern Nigeria, and that the independent regimes of Leopold Senghor and Abdou Diouf have continued in this tradition. The second impression is the continuing veneration of the founder of the order, Amadu Bamba Mback6 (ca. 1850-1927). Senegalese Muslims construe Amadu Bamba as a saint, pedagogue, master poet, and hero of
Journal of Religion in Africa – Brill
Published: Jan 1, 1991
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