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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Rain-Making, Political Conflicts and Gender Images: A Case from Mutema Chieftaincy in Zimbabwe
Author:Vijfhuizen, Carin
Notes:biblio. refs., maps
Geographic terms:Zimbabwe
Southern Africa
Women's Issues
Politics and Government
Peoples of Africa (Ethnic Groups)
Cultural Roles
Religion and Witchcraft
Anthropology, Folklore, Culture
Rain-making rites
Mutema chieftaincy
Political leadership
External link:http://digital.lib.msu.edu/projects/africanjournals/html/itemdetail.cfm?recordID=1235
Abstract:In the Ndau chieftaincy of Mutema in Chipinge District, southeast Zimbabwe, where the author carried out field research, drought is associated with political authority, power and control. Men and women explain drought in terms of historical and current conflicts over leadership and land, and believe that ancestors keep away rain if chiefs do not worship their ancestors together. The Mutema chiefs argue that Mutema was the rainmaker in the past, but that Musikavanhu stole the rainmaking power from them. Therefore Mutema and Musikavanhu chieftaincies cannot do rainmaking without each other, otherwise there will be drought. Drought also occurs when 'vatape' (village heads) do not cooperate. The author gives three examples of power struggles: struggles over leadership in a village, conflicts between supporters of different political parties in the chieftaincy, and conflicts about the leadership of Madzadza, which is the most important place of worship in the Mutema chieftaincy. She explains how men and women perceive their role in worship, which is an important aspect of rainmaking, and how they simultaneously construct and reproduce certain gender images. Bibliogr., notes, ref., sum.