Blog Posts

The Death of a Friend – Cali Jaamac Haabiil

The following poem was recited by Cali Jaamac Haabiil a pastoralist who died in the middle years of the 20th century. He was a prominent spokesman of his clan and a strong opponent of Maxamed Cabdile Xasan with whom he exchanged poetical diatribes. This poem falls firmly within the Baroordiiq (Lamentation) category of Somali oral poetry, with this poem, in particular, being one of the best of examples of this genre. This poem is unique in the sense that the

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Some of the names used for God (Allah) in Somali

An interesting passage from a book by I.M Lewis called ' Saints & Somalis: Popular Islam in a clan-based society'. Although the title of this book is problematic and follows the commonly repeated trope that Somalis cannot see beyond their tribal allegiances, this particular passage is beneficial in that it demonstrates Somalis inherent monotheism which existed in some from even before the advent of Islam.
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Wootargayt (Watergate) – Maxamed Xaashi Dhamac ‘Gaariye’

Wootargayt (Watergate) - Maxamed Xaashi Dhamac 'Gaariye' This poem was composed in 1976 after the United States used its veto in the UN Security Council against the entry of the newly independent state of Angola under Neto. The poet is concerned with the scandals that had engulfed the former American president Richard Nixon.
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Warriors: Life and death among the Somalis – Gerald Hanley

This book, like most forms of colonial literature, is deeply uncomfortable. Many Somalis who have read this book have been critical of the racist stereotypes contained within it. Yet ironically some of the most ‘heart-warming’ quotes about Somalis available on the internet are also from this book. In a way, this book reinforces the colonial stereotypes of Somalis as being amongst the ‘noble’ savages.
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Goobjooge- Qisadii Al-Itixaad iyo cabdullahi Yuusuf – Abdibashir

This is a very interesting and informative book on the beginnings and expansion of the Islamist group Al-Itixaad Al-Islaamii. This book provides an eyewitness account of how the group started, ideological differences within the group and some of the challenges they faced. The author provides insights on how members of Al-Itixaad viewed the older generation of Somali Ulema. The following points are some the differences between the old guard and the new generation that came to the forefront in the

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