By reevaluating the contributions of Galandou Diouf and his efficacy as a politician, this dissertation recasts Diouf as a major player in early twentieth-century Senegalese politics. Galandou Diouf's career has rested uneasily between Blaise Diagne and Lamine Gueye, documented but not explored. Many assumptions about Diouf's role in the colonial history of Senegal, about his intellect and attitudes, have been expropriated from colonial administrators, who tended to denigrate his intelligence and his importance. The apparent contradiction between Republican ideals and colonial realities were embodied in Galandou Diouf's experiences and rhetoric. This dissertation provides a model of Pierre Bourdieu's symbolic capital projected by an African politician in a constrained political field. Galandou Diouf's life and the lives of other political players and associates in colonial Senegal reveal how symbolic capital was obtained, deployed and lost in the public arena. Galandou Diouf was a resourceful and shrewd organic politician, who used his symbolic capital and his status as a veteran, Muslim, and African to build a network of political support within the communes, Protectorate and metropole. Diouf adapted to a changing colonial administration, which was often hostile to his program of reform. Diouf was able to identify some of the main problems of Senegal's economy and politics and he prefigured the nationalist movements of the 1960s. Diouf's career and his coalition politics can help us understand the role political parties played in the decolonization process and the formation and efficacy of political parties in modern Senegal.