Traditions and transitions : Islam and chiefship in Northern Mozambique, ca. 1850-1974
Author(s)Bonate, Liazzat J K
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AbstractIncludes bibliographical references (leaves 262-289).
This thesis is based on the archival and fieldwork research, and sheds light on the area which has been little studied or reflected in scholarly literature: Islam in Northern Mozambique. Its particular focus is on African Muslim leadership in Northern Mozambique, which has historically incorporated Islamic authority and chiefship. The link between Islam and the chiefly clans existed since the eight century when Islam made inroads into the northern Mozambican coast and became associated with the Shirazi ruling elites. With the involvement of the region in the international slave trade during the nineteenth century, the Shirazi clans secured alliances with the most powerful mainland chiefs through conquest and kinship relations in order to access supplies of slaves from the mainland. This process was accompanied by a massive expansion of Islam from the coast into the hinterland. The alliances between the Shirazi at the coast and the chiefdoms further into the interior resulted in a network of paramount chiefs and their subordinates making up the bulk of Muslim slave-raiders, who established the limits between themselves (the Maca, Muslims and 'civilized') and those to be enslaved (the Makua and Lomwe, derogatory terms, meaning savagery, i.e., 'non-Muslims' and 'uncivilized')