Bo-Kaap & Islam

The book is not about the colourful houses, the cooking, music, minstrels or slavery - it is an attempt to achieve a greater understanding of the history of Bo-Kaap. It also attempts to discover how Islam and the first mosques helped to shape the community. The reader is taken on an exploratory walk from the city centre to Bo-Kaap, past the mosques, early homes and cemetery. Architectural features are noted. Subsequent chapters explain the basic tenets of Islam; the function of a mosque; the meaning of Sunni, Shafee and Sufism and the role played by the religious schools. The similarities between the three Abrahamic religions, Judaism, Christianity and Islam are highlighted. The arrival, growth and consolidation of the faith in the Cape are fully explained as well as the early history of the suburb's ten mosques. The book concludes with a chapter on customs, the Muslim calendar, a glossary and basic greetings.