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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:The production of Islamic identities through knowledge claims in Bouaké, Côte d'Ivoire
Author:LeBlanc, Marie NathalieISNI
Periodical:African Affairs: The Journal of the Royal African Society
Geographic term:Ivory Coast - Côte d'Ivoire
social structure
Peoples of Africa (Ethnic Groups)
Religion and Witchcraft
Education and Oral Traditions
External link:https://www.jstor.org/stable/723889
Abstract:In the past thirty years, in Côte d'Ivoire, Islamic institutions have significantly changed in scope and magnitude, leading to the emergence of new practices and definitions of Islam. In the context of these transformations, young Muslims have acquired a growing public voice in the definition of Muslimhood through the growth of neighbourhood-based Islamic youth organizations and Franco-Arabic schools ('madersas'). In the city of Bouaké (the second largest city in the country), Islamic practices are divided between Wahhabiyya and non-Wahhabiyya, as well as between 'syncretic' and 'Arabized' notions. Young men and women's claims of legitimacy are made through modalities of schooling; they assert an Arabized version of Islam based on the formal acquisition of the Arabic language. This article, which is based on research carried out in Côte d'Ivoire in 1992-1995 and 1998, argues that knowledge claims made by young Muslims allow them to reckon with local power relations embedded in gerontocracy, as well as the social divisions brought about by ancestral ties and ethnicity. The article traces the connection between this localized manifestation of the expansion of Arabization and the emergence of a national political Muslim elite in the country. Notes, ref., sum.