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Trading WorldsAfghan Merchants Across Modern Frontiers$
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Magnus Marsden

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780190247980

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2016

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780190247980.001.0001

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Migrants, Militants, and Merchants

Migrants, Militants, and Merchants

Ahmed’s Story, from Trader to Talib

(p.199) 5 Migrants, Militants, and Merchants
Trading Worlds

Magnus Marsden

Oxford University Press

This chapter explores in greater detail the relationships between the professional, Islamic, and regional identities of traders. It does so by focusing on the northern Afghan town of Kunduz and on a group of traders in that context who identify themselves as being Panjshiri. These Panjshiris are part of complex and transregional trade networks that bring together people, things, and places across various boundaries. Whereas an important element of being a trader in contexts such as this is the ability to be flexible, this chapter explores the lives and identities of traders who emphasise instead their commitment to Islamic principles. It focuses in detail on the varying life trajectories of three brothers in Kunduz, documenting these men’s varying relationships to both reform-minded forms of Islam and movements of armed militancy, including the Taliban.

Keywords:   Northern Afghanistan, Islam, Taliban, Militancy, Ethnicity

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