Talk:Sundiata Keita

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I have two concerns about this page:

  • 1. This page needs to be moved to Sundiata Keita, it's the most common spelling.
  • 2. Sundiata was not mythical, he was an actual person who has living descendants (see: Salif Keita). He certainly has a mythos that surrounds him and his actual achievments have been blurred with the legends of the Sundiata Epic; Sumanguru truing into a Baobab Tree after being defeated for example.

If there are no objections I will move the page to Sundiata Keita on June 1.

-JCarriker 08:50, Jun 22, 2004 (UTC)

Go Ahead[edit]

I concur. please move it. thnx Scott Free 14:11, 14 February 2007 (UTC)

-The obscene reference to oral sex is not only innapropriate, but incorrect. this bit should be deleted, along with the celebrity reference joke. this is not the place for this kind of garbage.

We apologize, it has been removed. Smmurphy(Talk) 21:58, 4 April 2007 (UTC)


The first paragraph gives the dates c. 1217 to c. 1255; the birth category is given as 1190; is there a source for this birthdate? is the 1217 date a ruling date?; not my area, but would like to align the birth and death dates with their proper categories--FeanorStar7 11:08, 30 July 2007 (UTC)

Not sure what this means[edit]

"Although Western historians have traditionally given preference to written records, oral traditions including the epic of Sundiata have recently gained recognition as important demonstrations of Africa’s rich cultural heritage and as legitimate literary constructions" Eh? What would an illegitimate literary construction be? If this means that the epic's cultural / literary value was formerly neglected but is now recognised, then great, but it doesn't make its historical value any greater. If, on the other hand, it means that greater historical value is now recognised in it than previously, then that must be for evidence-based reasons which have nothing to do with its literary value, and we should specify what that evidence is. Literary and historical value are separate issues. At the moment, it sounds as if the article is saying "it used to be thought inaccurate but then we realised it was a good poem". It's a total non sequitur. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 16:29, 15 April 2008 (UTC)


I'm studying this in school, so I can make a better section for the Epic of Sundiata. Do you think I should go ahead?--Editpower100 (talk) 04:31, 26 February 2009 (UTC)

Um, sure. I don't know what your experiences have been. If this is your first major expansion I'd read through Wikipedia:Your_first_article and The Manual of Style. You can always create a sandbox page to try it out as well if you're concerned. Go to the edit tab and copy and paste the current article to something like User:Editpower100/sandbox: then edit till you're satisfied and paste the result here. Let me know if I can help. T L Miles (talk) 15:17, 26 February 2009 (UTC)

Are these supposed to be here?[edit]

"'mr philipienSundiata Keita"

"was the founder of the Tony Stuert"

What the header says. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 23:21, 18 November 2009 (UTC)

His religion (Muslim)? Dubious![edit]

There is no evidence in the original epos that he was a muslim other than what was later added, a practice which scholars like G. Wesley Johnson among others describe as "Islamic legitimacy". Some of his successors were Muslims though laxed Muslims among some of them. But there is nothing in the original source that states he was a muslim. In deed the Mali Empire itself was founded on the tenets of Traditional African religion. No matter who is trying to rewrite history, no matter how many fake genealogies were later added and his line of descend traced to a muslim figure called Lawalo or Bilali, a supposed friend or disciple of Muhammad. Bilali was of course the same Bilal al-Habashi (the former Ethiopian slave and disciple of Mohammed according to the Quran) who had a son called Lowalo who according to these additions was the ancestor of the Keitas. Not even the nonsensical point of Al-Bakri (who has been debunked on several important facts) regarding a king of "Malal" converting to Islam and citing prayers from the quran in order to bring rain hold any substance to it. It is merely fantasy just like him and many of his successors' account have been proved to be nothing more than fantasy and wishful thinking in order to paint Islam in West Africa in a positive light among the "Black pagans" (see: J. D. Fage, Roland Anthony Oliver, The Cambridge History of Africa: From c. 1050 to c. 1600, pp 389-90, Cambridge University Press, 1977, ISBN 0521209811; H. T. Norris (1971). New Evidence on the Life of ‘Abdullāh B. Yāsīn and the Origins of the Almoravid Movement. The Journal of African History, 12 , pp 255-268 doi:10.1017/S0021853700010665) (Cambridge Journals, Cambridge University Press); Ronald A. Messier. "The Almoravids and the meaning of jihad"). I am "Africanist" and interested in sifting the facts from the fiction especially "Islamic legitimacy" which is the biggest problem when it comes to writing the account of historical figures of West Africa where Islam is now the dominant religion e.g. Mali and Senegal. Another example is the epic of Ndiadiane Ndiaye of Jolof which the Wolofs later added to again "Islamic legitimacy" and contradicted the earliest recorded epic by Joseph-Alexandre Le Brasseur and the Serer sources of Sine whom must of the original sources regarding Ndiadiane came from (See: Boulègue's reprint of Brasseur: Boulègue, Jean. Le Grand Jolof, (XVIIIe - XVIe Siècle). (Paris, Edition Façades), Karthala (1987),pp 25-26; Research in African literatures, Volume 37. University of Texas at Austin. African and Afro-American Studies and Research Center, University of Texas at Austin, p 8. African and Afro-American Studies and Research Center, University of Texas (at Austin) (2006)).

The original oral performances about Sundiata Keita is full of useful information about the man. Any later additions that attempts to change his belief system from one to another is nothing more than fiction. Further, why isn't there any inline citation to this rather important and notable article? I'll go through the article again and provide inline citations. Any fiction will be deleted. Tamsier (talk) 13:26, 12 March 2012 (UTC)

Sundiata Keita's son and adopted sons and his brother all had Muslim names. There is little reference in oral tradition that he himself was Muslim, but little is not nothing and there is some reference. So it is safe to conclude that he was at least nominal Muslim. In fact, portraying him as non-Muslim is fantasy and wishful thinking by those who is interested in "sifting" the facts of Islam'c legacy from the history of West Africa. (talk) 11:12, 30 October 2012 (UTC)
Actually, it is not "safe to conclude" nor to refute anything at all, unless you have an attributable source that makes these same conclusions. We aren't allowed to conduct our own Original Research here. Til Eulenspiegel /talk/ 14:43, 30 October 2012 (UTC)
More than one source of the Sundiata epic refers to Islamic influences, or at least a monotheistic religion (which, historically in that region, would most likely be Islam). Even if Sundiata himself was not strictly Muslim, it isn't an accident that the epic has been infused with Islamic references. Oral history reflects the contemporary political and social climate as much as it reflects "objective" history. Islam was, and continues to be, an important influence in the region; therefore, the epic of Sundiata will continue to maintain an Islamic (not necessarily religious, but also cultural) identity. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Santaclausramses (talkcontribs) 06:52, 9 December 2013 (UTC)

Sundiata Keita and The Lion King connection[edit]

For the purpose of transparency , the obvious parallels between the Epic of Sundiata and The Lion King (as well as its franchises such as The Lion King (musical), etc.) has been a contentious point. I came upon a reference in the external link section before I started editing the Sundiata article, titled:

"The True Lion King of Africa: The Epic History of Sundiata, King of Old Mali - Paper addresses parallels found between Disney's "The Lion King" and the Epic of Sundiata."

I followed the link which led me here [1] (an abstract of the article), then to the article itself [2]. I have submitted a query to Wikipedia Reliable Sources Notice Board, the diff can be found here [3]. I wanted to use it in the Legacy section of Sundiata Keita's article. Having gone through the Lion King's article and talk page, I found it surprising that there was no mention of Sundiata's name (unless I missed it). I have raised the issue on that article's page. The discussion can be found here Sundiata Keita - The Lion King (Controversy).

Tamsier (talk) 20:29, 14 March 2012 (UTC)

Clean up notes[edit]

I have gone through this important and notable article from top to bottom and tried as much as I can to improve it. Before [4] and after [5]. Some of you speak the Queen's English better than I do so please help correct any grammatical errors. On a related note, please verify the existence of links before interlinking. The Sassouma Bereté and Dankaran Touman articles were both redirected to Sundiata Keita by an editor in 2009. I have no idea why they did that. I only found out when trying to find links for the Sundiata Keita article. I was working on. I've removed the redirection tags on both articles and created stub articles for them. I don't know how many articles relating to Imperial Mali have suffered the same faith since 2009. The one's I've doubled checked seems fine, but there are too many articles relating to Imperial Mali, so please confirm before interlinking. Tamsier (talk) 21:24, 16 March 2012 (UTC)