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Title:Khabir 'Ali at home in Kubayh: a brief biography of a Dar Fur caravan leader
Author:LaRue, G. MichaelISNI
Series:Working papers
City of publisher:Boston, MA
Publisher:African Studies Center, Boston University
Geographic term:Sudan
Subjects:long-distance trade
biographies (form)
About person:?Ali bin Ibrahim (182X-ca. 1908)
Abstract:This paper contains a brief biography of Khabir 'Ali b. Ibrahim (b. in the early to mid-1820s, d. in 1908 or 1909), who was the foremost caravan leader of the mid-nineteenth century, an important landowner and slaveowner in the Kubayh region and a member of the ruling elite of Dar Fur, Sudan. His life is examined, providing an opportunity to study the nexus between long distance trade, changing control over land and social stratification, as they were manifested in the life of a single individual. In the first section of the paper Kubayh is described from several angles: its location and configuration; its commercial role; and its boom town ethical values. 'Ali b. Ibrahim's life before he became 'khabir' constitutes the second section. When 'Ali b. Ibrahim became a 'khabir' himself, Dar Fur was on the threshold of a new commercial boom. In the third section, the reasons behind the boom as well as Khabir 'Ali's possible role in it are presented. The fourth section deals with Khabir 'Ali's place in Kubayh. In the fifth section things fall apart for Khabir 'Ali, because the economic position of Kubayh was threatened and Dar Fur fell to the forces of Zubayr Rahma in 1874. Khabir 'Ali ended up in Omdurman, but returned shortly before he died to Dar Fur.