All Fall 2020 Center for African Studies events will be held virtually and will require Zoom Webinar registration to participate. Registration information can be found by clicking individual events below for more details, or by viewing the full registration list here.
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Islam | Africa
October 6 @ 11:45 am - 1:00 pm
Terje Ostebo, UF. Ethiopia and Saudi Arabia: Between Proximity and Distance. 11:45am
Link to the meeting:
Abstract: Geographical proximity has enabled deep connections between peoples on the Arabian Peninsula and in the Horn of Africa. While this enabled important ethnic, cultural, and religious points of contacts between Muslims on the Peninsula and in the Horn, Ethiopia’s historical relations to the peninsula have, in contrast, been characterized by distance. Depicting itself as the “Christian island” in the middle of a hostile Muslim “sea,” Ethiopia adopted protective policies toward the outside world – and particularly towards its Muslim neighbors. These proximity-distance dynamics are crucial when trying to understand the contacts between Saudi Arabia and Ethiopia. Paying particular attention to the religious aspect of interactions, wherein Salafism is of importance, this talk will examine Saudi outreach activities, Ethiopia’s efforts to thwart these, and how Ethiopian Muslims’ attempts to negotiate in-between this produced complex relations characterized by a combination of proximity, restrictions, distance, and contact.