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Reconfiguring SlaveryWest African Trajectories$
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Benedetta Rossi

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9781846311994

Published to Liverpool Scholarship Online: June 2013

DOI: 10.5949/UPO9781846315640

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Islamic Patronage and Republican Emancipation: The Slaves of the Almaami in the Senegal River Valley

Islamic Patronage and Republican Emancipation: The Slaves of the Almaami in the Senegal River Valley

Chapter:
(p.85) 5 Islamic Patronage and Republican Emancipation: The Slaves of the Almaami in the Senegal River Valley
Source:
Reconfiguring Slavery
Author(s):

Jean Schmitz

Publisher:
Liverpool University Press
DOI:10.5949/liverpool/9781846311994.003.0005

This chapter examines the concealed trajectories of internal slavery in the Senegal River Valley. In particular, it looks at the endogenous trajectories of upward mobility among the slaves of a number of Almaami and the impact of new trajectories, inspired by colonial abolitionist ideology (for example, the military and school-teaching), on internal emancipation trajectories. The chapter first discusses Islamic patronage and pre-colonial emancipation in the Senegal River Valley, focusing on patrimonialism, clientelism, and the integration of slaves into the rural poor. It then examines how the ex-slaves' relationships with ex-masters and freemen in general influenced the relative strength of the stigma attached to slave status. A slave's social mobility was determined by the maintenance and renegotiation of dependence. The chapter also considers the transformation of slave–master relations into patron–client relations.

Keywords:   Senegal River Valley, slavery, social mobility, Almaami, Islamic patronage, emancipation, patrimonialism, clientelism, slaves, rural poor

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