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Islam, Archaeology and Slavery in Africa

J. Alexander
World Archaeology
Vol. 33, No. 1, The Archaeology of Slavery (Jun., 2001), pp. 44-60
Published by: Taylor & Francis, Ltd.
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/827888
Page Count: 17
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Islam, Archaeology and Slavery in Africa
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Abstract

Two different types of chattel slavery, those permitted by the Christian and Islamic religions, were introduced into Africa but only the Christian slave trade to the Americas has been studied by archaeologists. The much longer duration (over 1000 years) of the Islamic slave trade to Asia and of the Dar el Islam in North and East Africa is at present known only from literary and eyewitness accounts. It will prove difficult to recognise archaeologically and new techniques will have to be developed. Even more difficult to recognise will be the indigenous forms of slavery which existed in many parts of the continent at the coming of both Christianity and Islam, and the interaction between the three different concepts on which they were based.

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