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Associate Professor, Ph.D.

Research Institute for Languages and Cultures of Asia and Africa,
Tokyo University of Foreign Studies
3-11-1 Asahi-cho, Fuchu-shi,
Tokyo, 183-8534, Japan

Email: kotakariya[at]

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Research interests: West African Area Studies

I have studied Muslim intellectual networks spreading across West Africa and the surrounding area

West Africa is a place where Muslim intellectuals have historically composed a considerable number of writings in Arabic. With the object of examining Muslim intellectual networks in this region, I have analyzed these Arabic materials and tried to clarify the direct and indirect relationships established among West African Muslim intellectuals. Since their networks have not been confined to West Africa but also spread to North Africa and West Asia, my research on them also covers a broad area—from West Africa to West Asia.

While continuing this study of Arabic writings and Islam in West Africa, I recently began to take an interest in materials written in West African derivations of Arabic script, especially those written in Wolofal, an Ajami script for the Wolof language. In addition, my interest is expanding to various kinds of non-Islamic local religions recorded in Arabic works, which were composed by West African Muslims and those who observed West African religious circumstances from the surrounding area.

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