The Textile Museum Journal: Royal Garments of the Emir of Kano

Group of people in ceremonial robes
Photo by Muhammed Dallatu, Kano, December 14, 2019.


As a part of our online interview series for The Textile Museum Journal, contributing scholar Elisha P. Renne will discuss her research collaboration with the late Abdulkarim Umar DanAsabe on a selection of royal garments worn by the Emir of Kano, Muhammadu Sanusi II.

Dr. Renne examines the royal garments alongside discussions with palace officials, embroiderers and tailors. By analyzing photographs of burnouses, robes and turbans worn by Sarkin Muhammadu Sanusi II and earlier emirs, she learned how these garments illustrate their public nature and how they have contributed to the continuing political authority of traditional rulers in northern Nigeria.

About The Textile Museum Journal

Our peer-reviewed journal is the leading publication for the exchange of textile scholarship in North America. Published each fall, it features research on the cultural, technical, historical and aesthetic significance of textiles from all around the world. Learn more about the journal

About Elisha P. Renne

Dr. Renne is professor emerita in the departments of anthropology and of Afroamerican and African Studies at University of Michigan-Ann Arbor. Her interests include African ethnology and infectious disease, religion and the anthropology of textiles, and reproductive health and gender relations. She is the author and editor of multiple publications and has contributed to many academic journals.

How to Participate

This program will take place on Zoom. To participate, please register online, and we will email you a link and instructions for joining. Simply follow that link at the time the program starts (12 p.m. EST / 9 a.m. PST). When you register, you can also request to receive a reminder email one day before the program with the link included. 

About the Series

In this virtual series, authors who contributed to volume 48 of The Textile Museum Journal discuss new research on African textiles with guest editor Sarah Fee. Browse all interviews