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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:'My Daughter...Belongs to the Government Now': Marriage, Maasai and the Tanzanian State
Author:Hodgson, Dorothy L.ISNI
Year:1996
Periodical:Canadian Journal of African Studies
Volume:30
Issue:1
Pages:106-123
Language:English
Geographic term:Tanzania
Subjects:gender relations
Maasai
Peoples of Africa (Ethnic Groups)
Politics and Government
Cultural Roles
Marital Relations and Nuptiality
Law, Legal Issues, and Human Rights
External link:https://www.jstor.org/stable/486043
Abstract:In 1992, a young Maasai woman in Tanzania took her father to court rather than marry according to his will. By directly challenging her father's authority and, by implication, the authority of local elders, lineages, and clans, her suit disrupted local gendered relations of power. Her father and elder Maasai men were therefore compelled to scramble, both inside and outside the courtroom, to defend their 'legitimate' authority, an authority premised on a certain configuration of 'naturalized' and 'proper' gender roles and relations. And ultimately, by challenging the dominant meanings of 'daughter' and 'father', this one 'wicked' woman reconfigured, however slightly, local gendered relations of power. The case provides a window onto the strategies required for patriarchies to maintain their dominance by silencing and ostracizing 'wicked' women. Bibliogr., notes, ref., sum. in French.
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