Discourses of Muslim Scholars in Colonial Ghana
by John Hanson and Muhammad al-Munir Gibrill
Europeans, largely the British in the middle Volta Basin, imposed colonial rule in the last decades of the nineteenth century. In responding to this challenge, most Muslim scholars did not endorse military jihād and ultimately put aside reservations about the loss of political autonomy to make the best of the new circumstances. Some Muslims turned to Sufism, and others promoted Islamic reform movements. Al-ḥājj 'Umar's writings were an expression of a long tradition of West African Muslim scholarship that has not continued in the contemporary era, making his writings a significant aspect of the region's Muslim cultural heritage.