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Muslim Migration In & Out of Africa. African Studies Program Summer Institute 2012. Senegalese Muslims in Harlem, NY August 2005. Muslim Migration In & Out of Africa. Beth Buggenhagen Assistant Professor of Anthropology

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Muslim migration in out of africa

Muslim Migration In & Out of Africa

African Studies Program Summer Institute 2012

Senegalese Muslims in Harlem, NY August 2005

Muslim migration in out of africa1
Muslim Migration In & Out of Africa

  • Beth Buggenhagen

  • Assistant Professor of Anthropology

  • Where you can contact me with futher questions: [email protected]

  • Fieldwork in Senegal and US

Dakar, Senegal Dec. 2010

True size of africa kai krause 2010
True Size of Africa (Kai Krause 2010)


Web resources for teaching Islam

  • Frontline, “Muslims” at


  • Michigan State


Muslim migration in the recent past
Muslim Migration in the Recent Past

  • Immigrants were first welcomed into France after WWII to address a labor shortage, many of these immigrants had been conscripts and sailors during the period of the war

  • 1970s the French economy, like the American economy, suffered a recession and immigrants became competitors for low skilled low paying jobs

  • Itinerant single male immigrant workers became permanent immigrant families, esp. after 1974 under the family reunification act  

  • Far right played on insecurity and racism,

  • 1980s: resentment over cultural differences, fear of suburban violence, and international terrorism

  • Many West African Muslims come to U.S. from France

Muslim migration today
Muslim Migration Today

  • If a defining feature of migration in and out of Africa is its circular nature, then how do we understand processes of assimilation and integration in receiving countries?

  • Rather than settling permanently in foreign countries, many Africans remain tied to their home countries.

  • Some migrants are refugees of war, such as people from Libya, Somalia, Liberia, Sierra Leone, Congo (DRC).

  • Others are economic refugees, such as people from Senegal, Mali, Niger.

  • What is the impact of global sojourns on social and moral orders at home?

  • How does the political economy of migration and the global War on Terror affect people around the world?

Muslim migration and globalization
Muslim Migration and Globalization

  • West African communities have a long tradition of migration and Islamic cosmopolitanism

  • Muslims in West Africa have always been tied to long distance networks.

  • The question of globalization here then perhaps is one of directionalities and temporalities

Muslim migration and globalization1
Muslim Migration and Globalization

  • Think about relations, processes, paths, networks that operate beyond the level and purview of the nation-state

    • not as undermining the state,

  • But as the spaces in which the state is constituted, that is way in which state kind of steps back from these processes and then profits from them

  • Or even ways in which the traders made a profit by being able to cross boundaries, evade regulation,

Muslim migrants pbs org 2004
Muslim Migrants ( 2004)

Muslim migration and african states
Muslim Migration and African States

  • Focus on global circuits rather than nation-state, usual way of looking at globalization as weakening of the state

  • How traders switch in an out of the law

  • When official structures collapse, people turn to unofficial activities

  • In other cases, states rely on revenue from overseas remittances

Muslim migration and the west
Muslim Migration and the West

  • How does a religious minority fit within a secular nation?

  • Islam and a universal and global religion

  • Versus French republican ideology

  • Or U.S. notions of integration

Additional resources
Additional Resources

Recent Ethnographies of African Migration

  • Carter, Donald Martin. 2010. Navigating the African Diaspora. Minnesota University Press.

  • Kane, Ousmane. 2011. The Homeland is the Arena. Religion, Transnationalism, and the Integration of Senegalese Immigrants. Oxford University Press.

  • Abdullah, Zain. 2010. Black Mecca. The African Muslims of Harlem. Oxford University Press.