I am delighted to be able to I announce the publication of a new study of how some Senegalese mosques are currently being remade. Making and Remaking Mosques in Senegal, by Cleo Cantone, has just been published by Brill.
Among other issues dealt with in this book, Dr. Cantone explains how women worshipers are impacting the internal and external configurations of mosques built by the Islamic reform movement known as “Ibadou” or “Sunnite.” The Ibadou movement rejects Sufism and the hegemonic role of Sufi orders in the organization of Islamic practice in Senegal. Instead, “Ibadous” emphasize what they argue is normative, universal, Sunni religious practice. It is an urban movement and is particularly important in Dakar. The women, mostly young, who adhere to its principles are committed to learning the Qur’an, understanding Islamic sources and acquiring knowledge of the Arabic language, and they are organizing themselves in order to do so. One important impact of these endeavors has been to increase their access to mosques. They maintaining their right to attend daily prayers and they use the ancillary mosque spaces to hold lessons.
My contribution to Dr. Cantone’s study consisted of drafting maps of the mosques she studied. These are some of them.
The Rue Blanchot Mosque was Dakar’s only Friday Mosque in colonial times. It was built in the 1880s and was enlarged several times, in the 1910s, the 1930s and again in the 50s.
Controversially, the mosque in University of Dakar’s student residential area (Cité Universitaire) was built by reformist-minded students in the 1980s.
The Point E Mosque, not far from the university, was built in the 1990s.
If you want more information on these mosques you will just have to read her book!
- Making and Remaking Mosques in Senegal by Cleo Cantone, Leiden: Brill, 2012.