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History Lecture: Alufa Rufino, A Man of Faith and Sorcery on the Periphery of Islam

Brazilian historian João José Reis will present "Alufa Rufino, A Man of Faith and Sorcery on the Periphery of Islam in 19th-Century Brazil"

Brazil, and particularly Bahia, was arguably the destination of most African Muslims deported from West Africa to the Americas on board slave ships during the early nineteenth century. They were mainly Hausas, Nupes, and Yorubas who, once in Brazil, were involved in several slave revolts. This is a well-known story. What is less well-known is that parallel to this militant Islam, there were other, more accommodationist forms of Islam that also flourished among African slaves and freed people in Brazil.

This lecture is about a man who represented this form of Islam. A devout Muslim, Abuncare (a.k.a. Rufino José Maria) nonetheless dedicated himself to divination and other unorthodox practices that he learned in Africa and either reproduced in Brazil or adapted to Brazilian belief systems.

The lecture is part of the Department of History's Verne Moore lecture series, an annual series that has been funded by a gift from Verne Moore ’50 since 1986. Cosponsored by the Humanities Center and the Frederick Douglass Institute.

Thursday, November 1, 2018 at 2:00pm to 4:00pm

Rush Rhees Library, Humanities Center, Conference Room D
755 Library Road, Rochester, NY 14626

Event Type

Lectures and Talks


Faculty, Students


history, diversity


Humanities Center, Frederick Douglass Institute for African and African-American Studies
Contact Phone or Email or (585) 275-2053

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