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Mali, protests and uprisings, 1850s–2005

Jean-Jacques N. Sène


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Mali has long been a crossroads for the Arab peoples of North Africa and for black peoples living south of the Sahara and has seen a number of protests and revolutions. It was the seat of major medieval empires. In the seventh and eighth centuries the kingdom of Ghana rose to prominence through the commerce of gold, salt, and slaves. In the thirteenth century the empire of Mali, at its zenith in the thirteenth and fourteenth centuries, was erected on the ruins of Ghana, which eventually collapsed and gave way to the empire of Gao in the sixteenth century. Between 1852 and 1864, Tukulër (a branch of the Peulhs) warrior El Hadj Oumar Tall conquered most of the territory of Mali by launching his Jihad. The French subsequently pushed him out from his fortified camp near the city of Kayes in 1864 to establish the bases of the new colony of Upper Senegal. From there they engineered the occupation of today's Mali and Niger in 1857. They also captured Medina, a slave trading city, and erected a fort there. French conquest and domination was hastened with the creation of the colony of Upper Senegal-Niger in 1904 in the framework of the Afrique Occidentale Française (AOF, French territories of West Africa) and the amputation of the territory of Upper Volta to create the French Soudan (today's Mali). The construction of the Dakar-Niger railroad followed in 1923. Between 1913 and 1916 the French ... log in or subscribe to read full text

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