Search Result / Thurston

Northern Nigeria: Qur’anic Schooling and the Almajirai

by Alex Thurston This is the second post in a series on Muslim education in Northern Nigeria. Read the first post here. Muslims believe the Qur’an to be the word of God as revealed to the Prophet Muhammad, a revelation that corrects and completes earlier Messages to Prophets such as Abraham, Moses, and Jesus. Muslims throughout...

“Traditional” and Reformist Practices: Advanced Islamic Education in Northern Nigeria

This post is the third in a series on Muslim schooling in Northern Nigeria. The first post gave an overview of the series, and the second discussed Qur’anic schools. by Alex Thurston In Nigeria, advanced Islamic education--the step following one's basic instruction in the Qur'an--takes various forms. Here, I'll examine the traditional settings for advanced...

Mass Wedding in Kano

by Alex Thurston A recent story from Nigeria, one that touches on both marriage and shari’a, offers the possibility of a more sophisticated analysis of marriage in Africa as well as shari'a law.

African Responses to “Muslim Innocence”

by Alex Thurston Protests against the Innocence of Muslims film have taken on a global scope...in sub-Saharan Africa, responses have ranged from violent protests to calls for peace.
To Hajj Without an Escort

To Hajj Without an Escort

By Alex Thurston During the week of September 24, Saudi Arabian authorities detained and subsequently deported over 1,000 Nigerian female pilgrims who were on the hajj to Mecca. The incident caused considerable tension between the two countries.

Are Salafis “Conservative”?

by Alex Thurston The media’s use of the term “ultraconservative” is also connected with some Salafis’ support for implementing Islamic law in modern states. But Salafis are not the only ones to favor shari’a, nor are they always its most enthusiastic backers.

Kenyan Muslims Debate Anti-Terror Law

by Alex Thurston AMOK turns the logic of the law’s critics around: the bill will not target Muslims but protect them, and represents not outsiders’ agendas but a response to local problems.

Bad Sudanese? A “Marginal Revolt” is Underway

by Alex Thurston Should Sudan’s protesters topple President Omar al Bashir, I believe the media would get excited, but until they do, the Sudanese will remain, for the media, “marginal Arabs” or, as el Dahshan argues, Arab “villains.”

Rethinking Mali’s Political Culture

by Alex Thurston The MNLA and Ansar al Din have dominated the headlines about Mali this spring and summer. But how have other Malian Muslims reacted to the crisis in the north, and to the partial “Islamization” of the conflict by Ansar al Din?

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Who's the Enemy?  The Catholic Church.  Chicago Cardinal Francis George is unhappy that the gay pride parade will pass a local parish on the final Sunday in June--and that the Catholic leadership was not consulted about the new parade route.  Today on Fox Chicago News the Cardinal compared gay "rhetoric" to that of the...

Nigeria’s Islamiyya Schools: Global Project, Local Target

By Alex Thurston This is the fourth post in a series on Islamic education in Northern Nigeria. The first post gave an overview of the series, the second discussed Qur’anic schools, and the third talked about “traditional” advanced Islamic education, noting that traditions change over time. This post examines “Islamiyyaschools,...
Schooling Muslims in Northern Nigeria: Politics, Policies and Conclusions

Schooling Muslims in Northern Nigeria: Politics, Policies and Conclusions

by Alex Thurston Government-run Islamic schools, then, are to be a source of “counter-radicalization” as well as a means of moving almajirai into more “productive” schools. But the policy is unlikely to succeed.