In This Review

War and Slavery in Sudan
War and Slavery in Sudan
By Jok Madut Jok
University of Pennsylvania Press, 2001, 217 pp

The world has wearied of Sudan's endless civil war. Congress has shelved the proposed Sudan Peace Act (which would have penalized foreign firms involved in the extraction of Sudan's oil) while the United States bargains for Khartoum's cooperation in the crisis over terrorism. Meanwhile, Sudan's agony continues unabated. Jok, a U.S.-based, southern Sudanese academic, has produced a detailed and extensively researched account of the war's impact on the Dinka people of the Bahr el-Ghazal region. He focuses on centuries-old practices of slavery that were revived with the war's resumption in 1983 and examines the Sudanese government's complicity in these abuses as well as the political, social, and religious attitudes that perpetuate them. Separate chapters take up the issues of defining and describing modern-day slavery, the realities of slavery in Sudan's colonial history, and present controversies over slave redemption. Despite some repetitious sections, the book offers a well-referenced introduction to existing sources on these topics. An important and original addition to the literature.