Bundu was an anomaly among the precolonial Muslim states of West Africa. Founded during the jihads which swept the savannah in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, it developed a pragmatic policy, unique in the midst of fundamentalist, theocratic Muslim states. Located in the Upper Senegal and with access to the Upper Gambia, Bundu played a critical role in regional commerce and production and reacted quickly to the stimulus of European trade. Drawing upon a wide range of sources both oral and documentary, Arabic, English and French, Dr Gomez provides the first full account of Bundu's history. He analyses the foundation and growth of an Islamic state at a crossroads between the Saharan and trans-Atlantic trade, paying particular attention to the relationship between Islamic thought and court policy, and to the state's response to militant Islam in the early nineteenth century.
List of maps; Abbreviations; Notes on spelling; Acknowledgements; 1. Introduction; 2. Malik Sy and the origins of a pragmatic polity; 3. Consolidation and expansion in the eighteenth century; 4. External reforms and internal consequences: Futa Toro and Bundu; 5. The reassertion of Sissibe integrity; 6. Structure of the Bundunke Almaamate; 7. Struggle for the Upper Senegal Valley; 8. Al-Hajj Umar in Bundu; 9. The age of Bokar Saada; 10. Mamadu Lamine and the demise of Bundu; 11. Conclusion; Footnotes; Sources consulted; Appendices.