Ep71. A conversation with Erin Pettigrew on Muslim spiritual mediators, locally relevant research, and more

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We begin this week’s episode announcing an exciting collaboration with The Monkey Cage (@monkeycageblog) to feature bonus content each Monday morning — a weekly reading of a book review from TMC’s African Politics Summer Reading Spectacular (#APSRS19). Tune in on Monday!

The news we cover this week includes recent events in Sudan, Kehinde Wiley’s artist residency in Dakar, a nuclear project irradiating tsetse flies, and more.

Our featured conversation is with Erin Pettigrew, an assistant professor of History and Arab Crossroads Studies at NYU Abu Dhabi. Her research focuses on 19th and 20th century West Africa and histories of Islam, race, and healing in colonial and postcolonial contexts. Their conversation touches on how people deal with change over time, including practices involving the spiritual realm, which draws on what Erin learned in working on her exciting book project, To Invoke the Invisible: Islam, Spiritual Mediation, and Social Change in the Sahara. They also talk about Erin’s next book project on the history of a leftist political movement in Mauritania. Their conversation begins at 11:01.

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