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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Masculinity and ritual violence: a study of bullfighting among the Kakamega Luyia, western Kenya
Author:Kabaji, EgaraISNI
Year:2008
Periodical:Mila: a Journal of the Institute of African Studies
Volume:9
Pages:33-46
Language:English
Notes:biblio. refs.
Geographic terms:Kenya
East Africa
Subjects:Luyia
gender relations
customs
rituals
Anthropology, Folklore, Culture
masculinity
Bullfights
Luyia (African people)--Rites and ceremonies
Abstract:Although gender relations are constructed in terms of the relations of power and dominance between women and men, gender research in Africa has tended to focus mostly on women. This skewed attention has given rise to the popular perception that gender issues are synonymous with women's issues. This article demonstrates a shift in focus within gender studies to research on masculinity. It presents a critical analysis of the symbols of masculinity in bullfighting contests among the Abaluyia of western Kenya. Luyia bullfighting is an animal-to-animal fight, where the bulls can be seen as symbolic male proxies. The article describes overt and covert features of the contests that indicate hidden Luyia masculine desires, values, ideals and aspirations. Central to the study is the folklore generated and performed during bullfights and how this defines masculinity and gender relations in general. Bibliogr., sum. [ASC Leiden abstract]
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