Adherents of the current of Salafism known as “Madkhalism” have emerged as a major social, religious, political, and military force across Libya. But the so-called Madkhalis remain poorly understood and are often treated as a monolithic bloc or as proxies for Saudi Arabia. Drawing on fieldwork across the country, a book chapter explores the history of Madkhalism during and after the Qadhafi regime, its interactions with other forms of communal and political identity, its doctrinal splits, and its relationship to Saudi clerical authorities.

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This chapter is an excerpt from Salafism in the Maghreb: Politics, Piety, and Militancy, published by Oxford University Press.