African Virtues in the Pursuit of Conviviality
466 Pages
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African Virtues in the Pursuit of Conviviality


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466 Pages


African societies have rich histories, cultural heritages, knowledge systems, philosophies, and institutions that they have shaped and reshaped through history. However, the continent has been repeatedly portrayed negatively as plagued by multitudinous troubles: famine, conflict, coup, massacres, corruption, disease, illiteracy, refugees, failed state, etc. Even worse, Africans are often viewed as incapable of addressing their problems on their own. Based on such erroneous perspectives and paternalism, exogenous solutions are prescribed, out of context, for African problems. This book sheds light on the positive aspects of African reality under the key concept of �African potentials�. It is the product of sustained consultation over a five-year period between seasoned African and Japanese anthropologists, sociologists and scholars in other areas of African studies.



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Published 23 February 2017
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EAN13 9789956764785
Language English
Document size 7 MB

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African Virtues in the Pursuit of Conviviality: Exploring Local Solutions in Light of Global Prescriptions
Edited by Yntiso Gebre, Itaru Ohta and Motoji Matsuda
In collaboration
L a ng a a R P CIG M a nk on B a m end a
CAAS Kyoto U niversity
Publisher:LangaaRPCIG Langaa Research & Publishing Common Initiative Group P.O. Box 902 Mankon Bamenda North West Region Cameroon www.langaa-rpcig.netIn Collaboration with The Center for African Area Studies, Kyoto University, Japan Distributed in and outside N. America by African Books Collective ISBN-10: 9956-764-17-5 ISBN-13: 978-9956-764-17-4 ©Yntiso Gebre, Itaru Ohta and Motoji Matsuda 2017All rights reserved. No part of this book may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, mechanical or electronic, including photocopying and recording, or be stored in any information storage or retrieval system, without written permission from the publisher
About the Contributors Kyoko CROSSis Associate Professor at the College of International Relations, Ritsumeikan University, Japan. Her major research fields are international relations, transitional justice and human security. Her major works include:Diffusing Post-conflict Reconciliation: The Localization Mechanism of Pluralistic Norms(Yushindo 2016, in Japanese) and ‘The designing of the “reconciliation” process by the South African Truth and Reconciliation Commission: Analytical perspectives on local justice employment and its effects,’Peace Studies, Vol. 38 (2012, in Japanese). Yntiso GEBREis Professor of Social Anthropolgoy at Addis Ababa University, Ethiopia. He served as department head and college dean. His research interests include civil society organisations, population movement, conflict, violent extremism, and environment and livelihoods. His recent articles include: ‘Ethnic boundary making in East Africa: Rigidity and flexibility among the Nyangatom people’, African Study Monographs, Vol. 37, No. 4 (2016) and ‘Pastoral conflicts in East Africa: The unnoticed wars in the Ethiopia-Kenya border’, Ethiopian Journal of Development Research, Vol. 38, No. 1 (2016). He co-editedCustomary Dispute Resolution Mechanisms in Ethiopia,Volume 1 & 22011 & 2012) and (EACC Displacement Risks in Africa (Kyoto University Press 2005). Senishaw GETACHEW is Assistant Professor of Social Anthropology at Addis Ababa University, Ethiopia. Before joining the university, he worked for the Authority for Research and Conservation of Cultural Heritage of Ethiopia in different capacities: Director of Cultural Heritage Collection and Research Laboratory Service Directorate, Director of Cultural Heritage Research Directorate, and Head of Cultural Anthropology Department. He also served as consultant for various organizations, including UNESCO. His research interests focus on indigenous knowledge,
environment, livelihoods and heritage management. His recent publications in proceedings include: ‘Indigenous ecological knowledge system and local ecological management in midland Gedeo’ (2015) and ‘Intangible cultural heritage management’ (2010).
Masashi HASEGAWAis a graduate from the Graduate School of International Cooperation Studies, Kobe University, Japan and the Chief Executive Officer of the Grassroots Walkers Ltd. in Kenya. Morie KANEKOis Associate Professor at the Graduate School of Asian and African Area Studies, Kyoto University, Japan. Her main research topics are the cultural transmission of techniques of body and technological innovation in Africa. Her recent works include: Emerging Approaches to Understanding Gender-based Knowledge and Techniques in Africa (co-edited, Kyoto University 2013) andThe Ethnography of Pottery Making(Showado 2011, in Japanese).
Edward K. KIRUMIRASociology and the Principalis Professor of of the College of Humanities and Social Sciences, Makerere University, Uganda. He specialises in population and international health and has carried out research and acted as policy advisory on HIV and AIDS in sub-Saharan Africa. He has published on HIV and AIDS, sexual and reproductive health, and integrated rural development. He co-edited the bookSharing Water: Problems, Conflicts and Possible Solutions(Universitetsforlaget 2009) and published in 2015 on deaf identities in a multi-cultural setting. He is a Fellow of the Uganda National Academy of Sciences (UNAS) and Chair of the Partnership for Africa’s Next Generation of Academics (PANGeA).
Eisei KURIMOTOis Professor of the Graduate School of Human Sciences, Osaka University, Japan. He is a social anthropologist and has conducted research in South Sudan as well as western Ethiopia. His main interests are Nilotic ethnography, conflict and refugee studies. His major publications include:Conflict, Age and Power in North East Africa(co-edited, James Currey 1998) andRemapping Ethiopia(co-edited, James Currey 2002).
Augustine Ekitela LOKWANGis currently the County Security Advisor in the Turkana County Government. He has previously worked as a coordinator for various conflict and security projects with Danish Demining Group and Field Security Advisor for Tullow Oil, and also served in the Kenya Defence Forces for 11 years in the command, intelligence, training, personnel, administrative and operations positions. While working with the latter he served in the AMISOM operations as a security analyst supporting the sector commander. His current interests are in peace, conflict and governance.
Motoji MATSUDAProfessor of Sociology and Anthropology, is Kyoto University, Japan. His Research fields are Nairobi and Western Kenya. His research topics are urbanisation, migration and conflict. His major works include:Urbanisation from Below(Kyoto University Press 1998);The Manifesto of Anthropology of the Everyday Life World (Sekai Shisosha 2009, in Japanese); ‘The difficulties and potentials of anthropological practice in a globalized world’,Japanese Review of Cultural Anthropology, Vol. 14 (2012) and ‘Communauté et violence de rue à Nairobi’,Diogène, No. 251-252, Presses Universitaires de France (2015). Hisashi MATSUMOTO is Associate Professor at the Graduate School of Urban Innovation, Yokohama National University, Japan. His area of specialisation is cultural anthropology. His major research field is the resiliency of traditional rulers in contemporary Nigeria, especially among the Igbos. His works includeThe Resilience of Chieftaincy in Postcolonial Nigeria (Akashishoten 2008, in Japanese). Currently he carries out fieldwork on the Nigerian diaspora in East Asia. Kennedy MKUTUis Associate Professor in International Relations at United States International University-Africa, on sabbatical with the World Bank where he is a Senior Conflict Sensitivity Consultant. His research interests include pastoralism and security, in particular as it relates to the extractive industry in East Africa, and radicalisation in Kenya. He has been managing the Crime and Violence Prevention Training, a joint collaboration between Kenya School of
Government and USIU-Africa, sponsored by Open Society Initiative in East Africa; which brings together stakeholders from both government and non-government sectors, furthering partnership, understanding and skills for safety and security. Michael NEOCOSMOSthe Director of the Unit for the is Humanities at Rhodes University (UHURU) in South Africa. He is the author of numerous articles in academic journals on different aspects of African studies and of the following books:Social Relations in Rural Swaziland(edited, University of Swaziland 1987);The Agrarian Question in Southern Africa(Nordic Africa Institute 1993);From Foreign Natives to Native Foreigners: Explaining Xenophobia in South Africa(CODESRIA 2006, 2010). His latest book is entitledThinking Freedom in Africa: Toward a Theory of Emancipatory Politics(Wits University Press 2016). Francis B. NYAMNJOHProfessor of Social Anthropology at is the University of Cape Town. He served as the Head of Publications at the Council for the Development of Social Science Research in Africa (CODESRIA), Dakar, Senegal, from July 2003 to July 2009. He has taught sociology, anthropology and communication studies at universities in Cameroon and Botswana. He is: a B1 rated Professor and Researcher by the South African National Research Foundation (NRF); a Fellow of the Cameroon Academy of Science since August 2011; a fellow of the African Academy of Science since December 2014; a fellow of the Academy of Science of South Africa since 2016; and Chair of the Editorial Board of the South African Human Sciences Research Council (HSRC) Press since January 2011. His scholarly books include:Africa’s Media, Democracy and the Politics of Belonging(Zed Books 2005);Insiders and Outsiders: Citizenship and Xenophobia in Contemporary Southern Africa2006); (CODESRIA C'est l'homme qui fait l'homme’: Cul-de-Sac Ubuntu-ism in Côte d'Ivoire(Langaa RPCIG 2015) and#RhodesMustFall: Nibbling at Resilient Colonialism in South Africa (Langaa RPCIG 2016).
Itaru OHTAis Professor at the Centre for African Area Studies, and the Dean of the Graduate School of Asian and African Area Studies, Kyoto University, Japan. He has carried out anthropological research among the Turkana in Kenya and the Himba in Namibia. His major publications include:African Potentials(Kyoto University Press 2016, editor-in-chief, a set of five volumes in Japanese);Conflict Resolution and Coexistence: Realizing ‘African Potentials’Kyoto (co-edited, University 2014);Displacement Risks in Africa (co-edited, Kyoto University Press 2005);The Nomads in AfricaShowado (co-edited, 2004, in Japanese) andMarriage and Bridewealth Negotiations among the Turkana in Northwestern Kenya(Kyoto University 2007). Masayoshi SHIGETAis Professor of African Area Studies at the Center for African Area Studies, Kyoto University, Japan. His main research interests cover agricultural science, ethnobiology and anthropology of development. His recent works include: ‘Enset (Ensete ventricosum) production in Ethiopia: Its nutritional and socio-cultural values’,Agricultural & Food Science Research, Vol. 3, No. 2 (co-authored, 2016);Emerging Approaches to Understanding Gender-based Knowledge and Techniques in Africa(co-edited, Kyoto University 2013) and ‘Phylogenetic relationships between “Ensete” and “Musa” species as revealed by the trnT trnF region of cpDNA’,Genetic Resources & Crop Evolution, Vol. 58 (co-authored, 2011). Motoki TAKAHASHIis Professor at the Graduate School of Asian and African Area Studies, Kyoto University, Japan. His major research fields are sub-Saharan Africa's socio-economic development and foreign aid to low-income countries. His academic works include:Towards Renewal of Political Economy of AfricaShobo (Keiso 2010, in Japanese) andContemporary African Economies under Glogalization(co-edited, Minerva Shobo 2014, in Japanese). He is the President of Japan Society for International Development and former Editor-in-Chief of theJournal of African Studies (Japan Association for African Studies).
Samson Samuel WASSARA is Professor of Politics in the University of Juba, South Sudan. He holds PhD from Université de Paris XI-Sceaux (1994). He is currently the Vice Chancellor of the
University of Bahr el Ghazal. His research interests include post-conflict politics, the security sector, state building, and hydro-politics. His most recent publications are: ‘Political history of southern Sudan before independence of the Sudan’, in (R. Bereketeab, ed.)Self-Determination and Secession in Africa: The Post-Colonial State (Routledge 2015) and ‘South Sudan: State sovereignty challenged at infancy’, Journal of Eastern African Studies, Vol. 9, No. 4 (2015).
Table of Contents Part One: Conceptual and Contextual Issues…………… 1 Chapter 1. Introduction: Achieving Peace and Coexistence through African Potentials………..……3 Yntiso Gebre, Itaru Ohtaand Motoji Matsuda 1.1 Defining ‘African Potentials’ …………………………… 3 1.2 Critiquing the View of Liberal Peace as Self-Evident……………………………………………… 6 1.3 Two Paths to Exploring ‘African Potentials’……..……… 9 1.4 The Experiences of the Five African Forums…….………14 1.5 Expressions of African Potentials……………..………… 18 1.6 Organisation of the Book………….…………….……… 26 Chapter 2. The Potentials of African Customary Law: Reflections on Concepts, Values, and Knowledge Generation ..…………………….39 Yntiso Gebre 2.1 Introduction …………………………….……………… 39 2.2 Towards Conceptual Clarity …………….….……………44 2.3 Values and Virtues of Customary Law ……….….……… 54 2.4 Systematic and Comparative Research ………………….. 60 2.5 Conclusion……………………………………………… 65 Chapter 3. New Challenges for African Potentials in Mediating Conflicts: The Case of Turkana, Northwestern Kenya….…………. 73 Kennedy Mkutu and Augustine E. Lokwang 3.1 Introduction…………………………………..………… 73