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Urban Woes And Pious Remedies: Sufis, Urbanites, And Managing Social Crises In The Nineteenth Century

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Chapter Summary

This chapter consists of three parts. The first part picks up the narrative thread of Benaadir history from the last two decades of the nineteenth century. While much of the century was characterized by unbridled growth and urban prosperity, the period after 1880 was fraught with social and economic crises. This section discusses these issues and sketches out the evidence for the links between the urban mercantile community and the Sufi ṭuruq in the late nineteenth century. The second section focuses on the role of the orders in providing spiritual remedies for the troubles of the age. Finally, the third section briefly examines how ṭarῑqa affiliation afforded more concrete remedies for merchants? economic woes by providing new connections to producers of the interior that may have helped counter increasing foreign competition.

Keywords: ṭarῑqa affiliation; Benaadir history; economic crises; spiritual remedies; Sufi ṭuruq; urban mercantile community



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