African Ajami Digital Library

Congratulations to Boston University on the launch of their African Ajami Digital Library!  This follows another collection of texts hosted at Michigan State’s African Online Digital Library, Harvard’s ASK-DL, and a research collection on Tijāniyyah and the Fayḍah maintained by the Medina Baay Research Association.

The Library of Congress also hosts a fully imaged set of 32 Islamic manuscripts from Mali, which are written mainly in Arabic.  While full-text digital search and complete translations are not yet available, there are some indications of use of ajami characters in this set as well.  A longstanding project to catalog four collections at the Herskovits Library at Northwestern, begun under John Hunwick, has continued in various stages since 1991.

For more background on the historical development of literature in Ajami, see: Fallou Ngom. “Aḥmadu Bamba’s Pedagogy and the Development of ͑Ajamī Literature.” African Studies Review 52.1 (2009): 99-123. Project MUSE. Web. 21 Jan. 2011.

To read up on the technical standards coming into place for Ajami in the version 6.1 release of Unicode, see: Priest & Hosken, “Proposal to Add Arabic Script Characters for African and Asian Languages.”  2010.

Categories: African Languages, Ajami | Leave a comment

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