The second volume of
Arabic Literature of Africa (of which six volumes are planned) deals with the literature of Central Sudanic Africa, i.e. the area lying between the present Republic of the Sudan and Mali.
The bulk of the work concerns Nigeria, which has produced a voluminous and varied Arabic-Islamic literature. The smaller and less studied Arabic literature traditions of Chad, Cameroun and Niger are also examined.
The work is arranged both chronologically and by sub-region, and writers have been grouped within chapters according to their scholarly and religious affiliations. Full details are given of known manuscripts, published editions and translations. There are indexes of titles, authors, first lines of poetry and a general index. An initial overview and chapter introductions provide an outline intellectual history.
John O. Hunwick, Ph.D. (1974) in Islamic Studies, University of London, is Professor of African History and of Religion at Northwestern University. He has published extensively on Islam in West Africa, including
Sharī‘a in Songhay (Oxford, 1985).
R.S. O'Fahey was educated (B.A. & Ph.D.) at the School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London. He has taught at Khartoum and Edinburgh and presently holds a chair in Middle Eastern and African History at the University of Bergen. Previous books include
Kingdoms of the Sudan (with J.L. Spaulding), (London, 1974);
State and Society in Dār Fūr, (London, 1980);
Land in Dār Fūr (with M.I. Abu Salim), (Cambridge, 1983), and
Enigmatic Saint. Aḥmad ibn Idrīs and the Idrīsī Tradition, (London, 1990).
Die Zusammenarbeit der Mitautoren ...hat ein erstaunlich monogenes Werk zustandegebracht. Für die gigantische Aufgabe, die sie sich gestellt haben, verheißt dieser Band nur Gutes.' Ulrid Rebstock,
Die Welt des Islams, 1997. '
Grâce à cette formidable entreprise de catalogage, gageons que l'Afrique ne sera bientôt plus considérée comme une parente pauvre de l'orientalisme et de l'islamologie.' C.H.,
Studia Islamica, 1998.
Academic libraries, specialists and students of Islamic literature, and of the history of Islam in Africa.