Effects of Islam in the Culture of Africa

Document Type:Research Paper

Subject Area:History

Document 1

Native African religion also exists throughout the continent, and there is co-existence of multiple religions in some regions. The thin stretch of the Red sea that divides Arabian Peninsula and North Africa necessitated the entrance of Islam in Africa. Though their presence in African was short-lived, their effects on the African continent are still experienced up to date. Muslims in South Africa are few but vibrant minorities. Over the centuries, Muslims have made a significant effect on African culture as discussed in the rest of the paper. Africans previously dwelled in villages, but with the arrival of Islam, it contributed to urban development. ” There was the establishment of many towns bring urban development of that particular area3. This came as a result of many reasons.

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Islam is regarded to be an urban religion. The religious values, practices and beliefs, particularly those linked to organization and authority stressed the usefulness and cohesiveness within the social gathering In North Africa, Islamic followed reputable trade routes of the travelling Berbers. The indigenous weaving may have been changed by bring in of the weaving methods of North Africa. In East African coast, the Arabs majored most in the trade as compared to politics. In this region, there was a stiff competition Islam faced from Christian religion as compared to North and West Africa. Islamic traders successfully traded in Dar-es-Salaam, Mombasa and the Zanzibar’s Island. The blend of the culture engineered introduction of the new language known as Swahili which mixes African languages with Arabs4 “The towns such as Island of Zanzibar, Mombasa and Dar-es-Salaam located in the East Africa became hub of trade by the Arabs who successfully conducted their business in this towns”5.

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Some of the African cities such as Gao and Ghana, the Muslim Merchants presence contributed to the building of mosques. Malian King Mansa Musa reintroduced pilgrimage to Mecca the designer al-Sahili, who has earned praises for the establishment of the Sudano-Sahelian structural technique. Mansa Sulaiman who is Musa's a brother to Musa followed his lane and agitated the construction of Mosques, and also the creation of Islamic education Islam introduced a new technique of weighting and the art of writing in Africa. For instance, the city of Timbuktu excelled as an intellectual and commercial hub; apparently, un-interfered by a variety of turmoil. Timbuktu started as a mere residential which later grew into the kingdom of Mali; it was then recalled by the Tuareg, and eventually turned into the Songhai kingdom Most of the scholars in Timbuktu were Sudan nationals during the sixteenth century.

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In conclusion, the presence of the Islam in Africa since 615 AD has had tremendous effects on the African culture. Islamic cultural effects range from artistic practices, languages, dressing codes, construction designs and faith. It is important, however, to note that, though Africans adopted some Islamic cultural practices, the indigenous culture still exist with modifications. Bibliography Top of Form Top of Form "Christianity and Islam in Africa. Print. org/toah/hd/tsis/hd_tsis. htm Hawthorne Emery Smith.  “The historical impact of Islam and its future prospects in Africa”: a case study of Sudan and Nigeria, Institute of Muslim Minority Affairs. Journal, 9:2,  (1988) 311-330 Holland, Tom.  In the Shadow of the Sword: The Birth of Islam and the Rise of the Global Arab Empire.

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