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'Stringing Coral Beads': The Religious Poetry of Brava (c. 1890-1975)

A Source Publication of Chimiini Texts and English Translations

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Edited by Alessandra Vianello, Lidwien Kapteijns and Mohamed Kassim

This book presents fifty-one didactic and devotional Sufi poems (with English translations) composed by the ulama of Brava, on Somalia’s Benadir coast, in Chimiini, a Bantu language related to Swahili and unique to the town. Because the six ulama-poets, among whom two women, guided local believers towards correct beliefs and behaviours in reference to specific authoritative religious texts, the poems allow insight into their authors’ religious education, affiliations, in which the Qādiriyyah and Aḥmadiyyah took pride of place, and regional connections. Because the poems refer to local people, places, events, and livelihoods, they also bring into view the uniquely local dimension of Islam in this small East African port city in this time-period.

Landscapes, Sources and Intellectual Projects of the West African Past

Essays in Honour of Paulo Fernando de Moraes Farias

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Edited by Toby Green and Benedetta Rossi

Landscapes, Sources and Intellectual Projects of the West African Past offers a comprehensive assessment of new directions in the historiography of West Africa. With twenty-four chapters by leading researchers in the study of West African history and cultures, the volume examines the main trends in multiple fields including the critical interpretation of Arabic sources; new archaeological surveys of trans-Saharan trade; the discovery of sources in Latin America relating to pan-Atlantic histories; and the continuing analysis of oral histories. The volume is dedicated to Paulo Fernando de Moraes Farias, whose work inspired the intellectual reorientations discussed in its chapters and stands as the clearest formulation of the book’s central focus on the relationship between political conjunctures and the production of sources.

Contributors are: Benjamin Acloque, Karin Barber, Seydou Camara, Mamadou Diawara, Paulo Fernando de Moraes Farias, François-Xavier Fauvelle, Nikolas Gestrich, Toby Green, Bruce Hall, Jan Jansen, Shamil Jeppie, Daouda Keita, Murray Last, Robin Law, Camille Lefebvre, Paul Lovejoy, Ghislaine Lydon, Carlos Magnavita, Sonja Magnavita, Kevin MacDonald, Thomas McCaskie, Ann McDougall, Daniela Moreau, Mauro Nobili, Insa Nolte, Abel-Wedoud Ould-Cheikh, Benedetta Rossi, Charles Stewart.

A Bibliography of South African Languages, 2008-2017

With an Introduction by Menán du Plessis

Edited by Anne Aarssen, René Genis and Eline van der Veken

This concise bibliography on South-African Languages and Linguistics was compiled on the occasion of the 20th International Congress of Linguists in Cape Town, South Africa, July 2018. The selection of titles is drawn from the Linguistic Bibliography and gives an overview of scholarship on South African language studies over the past 10 years. The introduction written by Menán du Plessis (Stellenbosch University) discusses the most recent developments in the field.
The Linguistic Bibliography is compiled under the editorial management of Eline van der Veken, René Genis and Anne Aarssen in Leiden, The Netherlands.
Linguistic Bibliography Online is the most comprehensive bibliography for scholarship on languages and theoretical linguistics available. Updated monthly with a total of more than 20,000 records annually, it enables users to trace recent publications and provides overviews of older material.
For more information on Linguistic Bibliography and Linguistic Bibliography Online, please visit brill.com/lbo and linguisticbibliography.com.

The e-book version of this bibliography is available in Open Access.

Translocal Connections across the Indian Ocean

Swahili Speaking Networks on the Move

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Edited by Francesca Declich

The book describes the worlds where Swahili is spoken as multi-centred contexts that cannot be thought of as located in a specific coastal area of Kenya or Tanzania. The articles presented discuss a range of geographical areas where Swahili is spoken, from Somalia to Mozambique along the Indian Ocean, in Europe and the US. In an attempt to de-essentialize the concepts of translocality and cosmopolitanism, the emphasis of the book is on translocality as experienced by different social strata and by gender and cosmopolitanism as an acquired attitude.

Contributors are: Katrin Bromber, Gerard van de Bruinhorst, Francesca Declich, Rebecca Gearhart Mafazy, Linda Giles, Ida Hadjivayanis, Mohamed Kassim, Kjersti Larsen, Mohamed Saleh, Maria Suriano, Sandra Vianello.

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Edited by Stephen Bulman and Valentin Vydrine

The Epic of Sumanguru Kante contains the Bamana text and English translation of griot Abdoulaye Sako’s oral narrative of the life of Sumanguru, recorded in 1997 in Koulikoro (Mali), together with explanatory notes, a scholarly introduction, and sections on the Bamana language and musical accompaniment. Sumanguru is a familiar figure within Manding epic oral traditions about ancient Mali. But while these narratives generally focus on Sunjata Keita, Sako’s oral poem is rare in according Sumanguru the central role. In so doing he includes hitherto undocumented episodes relating to Sumanguru’s life and role as the ruler of Soso, the little known state said to have flourished in the western Sudan between the fall of ancient Ghana and rise of ancient Mali.

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Edited by Kai Kresse

Sheikh al-Amin Mazrui wrote his essays of this Guidance ( Uwongozi) collection in Mombasa between 1930 and 1932, providing social critique and moral guidance to Kenya’s coastal Muslims during a period of their decline during British colonial rule. The essays were initially published as a series of double-sided pamphlets called Sahifa (The Page), the first Swahili Islamic newspaper. Inspired by contemporary debates of Pan-Islam and Islamic modernism, and with a critical eye on British colonialism, this leading East African modernist takes issue with his peers, in a sharply critical and yet often humorous tone. Al-Amin Mazrui was the first to publish Islamic educational prose and social commentary in Swahili. This bi-lingual edition makes fascinating reading for specialists and general readers.

The Arabic Script in Africa

Studies in the Use of a Writing System

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Edited by Meikal Mumin and Kees Versteegh

The Arabic script in Africa contains sixteen papers on the past and present use of Arabic script to write African languages. These writing traditions, which are sometimes collectively referred to as Ajami, are discussed for single or multiple languages, with examples from all major linguistic phyla of Africa but one (Khoisan), and from all geographic areas of Africa (North, West, Central, East, and South Africa), as well as a paper on the Ajami heritage in the Americas. The papers analyze (ethno-) historical, literary, (socio-) linguistic, and in particular grammatological aspects of these previously understudied writing traditions and exemplify their range and scope, providing new data for the comparative study of writing systems, literacy in Africa, and the history of (Islam in) Africa.

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Maarten Kossmann

The Arabic Influence on Northern Berber provides an overview of the effects of language contact on a wide array of Berber languages spoken in the Maghrib. These languages have undergone important changes in their lexicon, phonology, morphology, and syntax as a result of over a thousand years of Arabic influence. The social situation of Berber-Arabic language contact is similar all over the region: Berber speakers introducing Arabic features into their language, with only little language shift going on. Moreover, the typological profile of the different Berber varieties is relatively homogenous. The comparison of contact-induced change in Berber therefore adds up to a study in typological variation of contact influence under very similar linguistic and social conditions.

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Edited by Alexandra Aikhenvald and Anne Storch

Every language has a way of talking about seeing, hearing, smelling, tasting and touching. In about a quarter of the world's languages, grammatical evidentials express means of perception. In some languages verbs of vision subsume cognitive meanings. In others, cognition is associated with a verb of auditory perception, touch, or smell. 'Vision' is not the universally preferred means of perception. In numerous cultures, taboos are associated with forbidden visual experience. Vision may be considered intrusive and aggressive, and linked with power. In contrast, 'hearing' and 'listening' are the main avenues for learning, understanding and 'knowing'. The studies presented in this book set out to explore how these meanings and concepts are expressed in languages of Africa, Oceania, and South America.

Outline of Swahili Literature

Prose Fiction and Drama. Second Edition, Extensively Revised and Enlarged.

Elena Bertoncini Zúbková, Mikhail Gromov, Said Khamis and Kyallo Wamitila

Outline of Swahili Literature is a major study and reference guide of modern prose and drama in Swahili — one of the largest languages of sub-Saharan Africa. This second edition of the eponymous study first published in 1989, is extensively revised and enlarged. It contains new and updated information, mapping trends and writers. Special attention is thereby given to the developments in Swahili literature that took place in the late 1980s, 1990s and early 2000s. All this makes this book a unique source and the most up-to-date study in the field. It is of the essence not only to specialists in contemporary African Studies, but also to a wider range of scholars researching modern literary techniques and modern cultures. Moreover, the book contains a resourceful bio-bibliographical index of modern Swahili writers and an annotated bibliography of all known works in Swahili modern prose and drama published from the late 1950s up to 2008.