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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:The Politician and the Diviner: Divination and the Consumption of Power in Sierra Leone
Author:Shaw, Rosalind
Year:1996
Periodical:Journal of Religion in Africa
Volume:26
Issue:1
Period:February
Pages:30-55
Language:English
Geographic term:Sierra Leone
Subjects:divination
politicians
Peoples of Africa (Ethnic Groups)
Religion and Witchcraft
Politics and Government
External link:https://www.jstor.org/stable/1581893
Abstract:This paper demonstrates that recent accounts of nefarious relationships between diviners and politicians in Sierra Leone, such as those after the 1992 regime change, draw upon earlier processes and tropes - but not necessarily those of the historical links between diviners and chiefs. In representations of the supernatural underpinnings of political corruption in Sierra Leone, eighteenth and nineteenth-century ideas of auspicious relationships between diviners and local rulers in the presence of powerful foreign elites are replaced by nineteenth-century understandings of the horrifying ritual origins of rapid enrichment and of new forms of leadership - understandings which draw upon much older indigenous critiques of the slave trade as malign, 'cannibalistic' consumption. Bibliogr., notes, ref.
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