Darfur's Sorrow

Author(s): M.W. Daly

Current Affairs

Darfur is a region set apart: huge, remote, and poverty stricken. Its people are today locked in conflict, terrorized by the lawless Arab militia known as janjawid, which has created what the United Nations has called 'the world's worst humanitarian disaster'. As M. W. Daly, distinguished historian and long-term observer of the Sudan, explains, the roots of the crisis lie deep in Darfur's past. Tracing the story to the origins of the Fur state in the seventeenth century, through imperial expansion, revolution, and finally Darfur's annexation by the Anglo-Egyptian Sudan, he shows how years of neglect left the region unprepared for independence. The final chapters focus on the years thereafter, as successive governments failed to rise to the challenges of institution building and economic and political administration, and the region descended into chaos. This is a complex and often harrowing story, told with compassion, insight, and a strong sense of place.


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'This carefully researched work provides an admirably full explanation of the context of Darfur's troubles. It makes clear how the conflict was precipitated by the regime of President Omar Bashir, who still denies that anything is much amiss in the region. Though most people date the fighting from 2003, Mr Daly shows that its antecedents extend well back into history: the 'rebellion' of that year was an overdue response to the regime's policy of ethnic cleansing that had been going on for years.' The Economist 'Martin Daly is the most distinguished scholar of Sudan's colonial period, possessing an intimate knowledge of the imperial archives.' Times Higher Education Supplement 'Daly offers the most detailed discussion I have seen yet of the key role of successive Sudanese regimes ... in turning Darfur, the remote western dependency of Sudan's riverain heartland into an impoverished backwater.' Times Literary Supplement


1. The 'Abode of the Blacks'; 2. Lords of mountain and Savanna: the origins and history of the Fur State to 1874; 3. The ends of the Turkish World; 4. Darfur at the end of time: the Mahdiyya, 1885-1898; 5. Between an anvil and a hammer: the reign of All Dinar, 1898-1916; 6. 'Closed district': Anglo-Egyptian colonial rule in Darfur, 1916-1939; 7. Unequal struggles, 1939-1955; 8. Colonial legacies and Sudanese rule, 1956-1969; 9. Darfur and 'The May Regime,' 1969-1985; 10. Third time unlucky: Darfur and the restoration of Parliamentary Rule; 11. The state of Jihad; 12. The destruction of Darfur.

General Fields

  • : 9780521699624
  • : 53220
  • : 53220
  • : June 2007
  • : 228mm X 152mm X 21mm
  • : United Kingdom
  • : books

Special Fields

  • : 19 b/w illus. 2 maps
  • : M.W. Daly
  • : Paperback
  • : 962.7
  • : 388