Nubia: History and Religious Background

John G. Kennedy

in Nubian Ceremonial Life

Published by American University in Cairo Press

Published in print March 2006 | ISBN: 9789774249556
Published online January 2012 | e-ISBN: 9781617970955 | DOI:
Nubia: History and Religious Background

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With the building of the High Dam at Aswan, Egypt generated a worldwide movement to save the ancient monuments of Nubia, but stimulated practically no effort to document the culture of the living Nubians. The goals of this study are to provide some insight into how Islam was practiced at the village level in Nubia as well as some understanding of how religion related to social process and of how it articulated with ceremonial practices that appear to be non-Islamic. The Nubians regarded themselves as strong Muslims, though they were converted to the Islamic faith relatively late in comparison with the Egyptians. The syncretism of Nubian ceremonial practices contains three major categories of customs and beliefs: Non-Islamic, Popular Islamic, and Orthodox Islamic. These categories are not simple classifications, but are recognized in practice among the Nubians themselves.

Keywords: Nubia; Egyptians; Non-Islamic; Popular Islamic; Orthodox Islamic

Chapter.  8807 words. 

Subjects: Society and Culture

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