El Hadji Samba Amadou Diallo

El Hadji Samba Amadou Diallo

Senior Lecturer in African and African American Studies
PhD, Ècole des Hautes Ètudes en Sciences Sociales (Paris)
research interests:
  • Francophone Africa
  • Historical Anthropology
  • Islam in West Africa
  • Wolof Language & Culture
  • Youth Culture in Africa & the African Diaspora
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    contact info:

    mailing address:

    • Washington University
    • Campus Box 1109-0137-02
    • One Brookings Drive
    • St. Louis, MO 63130
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    El Hadji Samba Diallo joined African and African American Studies in 2011 to expand the language offerings by teaching Wolof. Since joining, he expanded his course offerings to include classes on Islam, Sufism, and Francophone Africa.

    His research explores the ways religious institutions reproduce themselves and how adherents accept as natural, the interpretation of those institutions by their leaders. Diallo uses a variety of international archives in France and Senegal as well as ethnographic research. His first book was entitled La Tijāniyya sénégalaise: Les métamorphoses des modèles de succession (Paris: Publisud, 2010). In addition to the book, he has published several articles on the expansion of the Tijāniyya brotherhood in French Colonial History, Africa Zamani, Incursions, and Social Compass. His most recent publications have examined the dissemination of Sufism and Islam as well as democratization processes in Africa.

    His current research project explores musical influences between Africa and its diaspora. Inspired by his popular freshman seminar, Youth in Africa, the research looks to newer diasporic connections taking place via dance and the movement of Hip-Hop. The connections include a variety of music such as Zouk, Cabo Love, and Kizomba, stretching from Cape Verde, Angola, the Netherlands, France, and Portugal to Brazil and the Antilles. 

    In addition to his teaching and research commitments, Diallo continues to work with graduate and undergraduate students while fostering connections with African communities in St. Louis. To this end, he organizes many events on campus, including the annual Ñiari Ràkka conference with African Islamic leaders and scholars of Islam.

    Before coming to Washington University, Samba taught courses at Southern Illinois University at Edwardsville. He received his doctorate in History and Social Anthropology from the École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales (EHESS) in Paris, France in July 2005.


    “Le rôle de l’Administration française dans les conflits de succession dans la Tijāniyya nord-africaine: répercussions sur les marabouts sénégalais,” French Colonial History, Volume 9, 2008 :  147-174.

    Book review for Archives des Sciences Sociales des Religions, No. 144, 2008, 164-167, on (Cheikh Anta Babou), Fighting the Greater Jihad : Amadu Bamba and the Founding of the Muridiyya of Senegal, 1853-1913 (Athens: Ohio University Press, 2007).

    La Tijāniyya  sénégalaise : les métamorphoses des modèles de succession. Le cas de la famille Sy de Tivaouane(Paris : Editions Publisud, 2010).

    “Retour sur les conditions historiques et sociologiques de la fondation de la Tijāniyya,Africa Zamani, Nos. 15 & 16, 2007-2008, pp.129-158.

    “Exploring a Sufi Tradition of Islamic Teaching: Educational and Cultural Values Among the Sy Tijāniyya of Tivaouane (Senegal)”, Social Compass, 58 (1) 2011.

    “La production des savoirs sur les confréries sénégalaises: le dilemme de la distanciation et de l’appartenance,” Incursions (Association française pour la formation et la recherche en sciences sociales).  September 2011.


    Courses Taught

    Sufism and Islamic Brotherhoods in Africa

    Islam, Transnationalism, and the African Diaspora

    Islam, Society, and Culture in West Africa

    Seminar: Imagining and Creating Africa: Youth and Cultural Change

    Wolof I and II

    French I and II