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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:'Serious games': licences and prohibitions in Maasai sexual life
Author:Talle, AudISNI
Year:2007
Periodical:Africa: Journal of the International African Institute
Volume:77
Issue:3
Pages:351-370
Language:English
Geographic terms:Kenya
Tanzania
Subjects:Maasai
sexuality
customs
External links:https://doi.org/10.3366/afr.2007.0062
http://muse.jhu.edu/journals/africa_the_journal_of_the_international_african_institute/v077/77.3talle.pdf
Abstract:This article discusses sexual licences and prohibitions among the Maasai of Kenya and Tanzania with particular reference to the institutionalized yet controversial sexual relations between young pre-menarche girls and adolescent unmarried men. These relations are referred to as children's 'play' in the local vernacular, and as such fall within a larger moral order of age and gender hierarchies that privilege male seniority. The article uses the metaphor of 'serious games' adopted from Sherry Ortner as an analytical device in order to capture the dynamic and ambiguous character of Maasai sexual licences and prohibitions. Being at once serious and playful, 'games' lend themselves particularly to players' creativity, initiative and agency. The article aims to demonstrate how the structures of the games open up and create space for women and other 'juniors' to act intentionally and with purpose in their sexual lives. Bibliogr., notes, sum. in English and French. [Journal abstract]
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