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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Facing Dilemmas: Former Fulbe Slaves in Modern Mali
Authors:Bruijn, Mirjam deISNI
Pelckmans, Lotte
Year:2005
Periodical:Canadian Journal of African Studies
Volume:39
Issue:1
Pages:69-95
Language:English
Geographic term:Mali
Subjects:social inequality
social structure
Fulani
slaves
Peoples of Africa (Ethnic Groups)
Labor and Employment
History and Exploration
Link:https://www.jstor.org/stable/25067451
Abstract:In central Mali, the traditional Fulbe hierarchies, in which dependency relations are firmly defined, still play an important role in local politics and are always present even though slavery was abolished at least one hundred years ago. The former slaves, called Riimaybe, are struggling to find a new position in society. The authors explain the persistence of the inequality between (former) slaves and their masters by analysing the way slaves perceive themselves and how they define their own position in society by reflecting on the past. (Former) slaves are currently facing numerous dilemmas that inform their social identity. One of the important problems former slaves face is that they are 'people without history'. In the ethnographic material of this article, based on data from different periods of fieldwork from 1987 to 2002 in the Hayre (Central Mali), the authors hope to give former slaves a voice by presenting both their historical narratives and their current situations. They discuss the perspectives on history of (former) slaves, focusing on three cases: Dalla, a village where the 19th-century kings resided; Serma, a small hamlet situated in the middle of cattle camps; and the inhabitants of Douentza, a small town in the area. Bibliogr., notes, ref., sum. in French. [ASC Leiden abstract]
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