We cannot verify your location
Browse Book and Journal Content on Project MUSE
OR

Mediating Legitimacy: Chieftaincy and Democratisation in Two African Chiefdoms

Chieftaincy and Democratisation in Two African Chiefdoms

Jude Fokwang

Publication Year: 2009

This study analyses the effects of democratic transition in two African countries - Cameroon and South Africa - on chiefs and the institution of chieftainship. Based on ethnographic fieldwork, the monograph explores the cultural and socio-political conditions that enabled chiefs to reinvent themselves in the new era of democratic politics despite their status as 'old political actors'. It explores the kinds of legitimacies claimed by chiefs in the new era and the responses of their subjects to such claims, particularly with respect to chiefs' involvement in national politics. The monograph makes a case for the importance of comparative research on chiefs in the era of democracy and the predicaments they face therein. It contends that contrary to exhortations about the incompatibility of chiefs and democracy, the reality is that political transition in both South Africa and Cameroon produced contradictions, creating space and a role for chiefs in a fascinating and negotiated interplay of legitimacies and history.

Published by: African Books Collective

Title Page, Copyright Page

pdf iconDownload PDF (93.6 KB)
 

read more

Prologue

pdf iconDownload PDF (66.8 KB)
pp. v-vi

In August 2005, I participated at the Pan African Anthropological Association’s 15th anniversary conference in Yaoundé, Cameroon. This conference was unique because it devoted a special session on the much-debated question of traditional leadership in Africa, and perhaps unprecedentedly, invited a select number of chiefs ...

read more

Preface

pdf iconDownload PDF (83.5 KB)
pp. vii-viii

During the 1990s, most African countries experienced what has been termed their ‘second independence’ (Hyden and Bratton 1992), a period of political upheaval and socio-economic turmoil that led to the introduction of democratic structures across the continent. In many countries including South Africa and Cameroon, ...

List of Abbreviations

pdf iconDownload PDF (58.8 KB)
pp. ix-x

Contents

pdf iconDownload PDF (103.2 KB)
pp. xi-xii

read more

Acknowledgements

pdf iconDownload PDF (59.7 KB)
pp. xiii-

This monograph owes its greatest debt to Prof. John Sharp who negotiated and obtained funding from SANPAD for the project and provided tremendous intellectual support during fieldwork and throughout the period I spent writing up my findings. Prof. Sharp accompanied me during my first trip to Venda ...

read more

Chapter One: Chieftaincy in contemporary perspective

pdf iconDownload PDF (637.6 KB)
pp. 1-21

This book is a comparative study of two African chiefs and chiefdoms in the era of democratisation. It is based on fieldwork in the Tshivhase chiefdom of Venda in South Africa and the chiefdom of Bali-Nyonga in the North West Province of Cameroon. Both studies were conducted between 2001-2002, ...

read more

Chapter Two: Rivalry, resistance and liberation politics in Venda

pdf iconDownload PDF (157.7 KB)
pp. 22-33

This chapter deals with the historical background to the chiefdom of Tshivhase from the eighteenth century to the end of the apartheid era in 1994. It explores the migration history of the Venda to their present site, their so-called ‘golden age’ under Thohoyandou, and their subsequent disintegration into ...

read more

Chapter Three: Chiefs, local government and social change in post-apartheid Tshivhase

pdf iconDownload PDF (622.6 KB)
pp. 34-55

In the preceding chapter, I examined the role and predicament of chiefs in Venda during the pre-colonial, colonial and apartheid era. This provided the reader with the historical background to the transformations that chiefs and the masses in Venda experienced until 1994. In this chapter, I will explore the changes ...

read more

Chapter Four: Historical patterns on change and continuity in traditional leadership in Bali

pdf iconDownload PDF (150.2 KB)
pp. 56-66

This chapter examines in brief, the migration history of the Chamba group during the 18th century and its present circumstances, particularly since the early 1990s. It examines the disintegration of the Chamba group into several chiefdoms, one of them being Bali Nyonga and its implications for understanding ...

read more

Chapter Five: Democratic transition and chiefdom politics in Bali

pdf iconDownload PDF (396.4 KB)
pp. 67-86

The introduction of political pluralism in Cameroon in 1990 created conditions for the return of old political actors such as chiefs to the ‘national political scene’, despite the popular demand for ‘actors’ of a new kind (Geschiere 1993:151). The principal question was on what legitimacy would such ‘old actors’ play ...

read more

Chapter Six: Chieftaincy and democracy in comparative perspective

pdf iconDownload PDF (201.3 KB)
pp. 87-103

In this final chapter I will focus on the comparative dimensions of the cases under study– that is, identifying and accounting for the differences and parallels that have been experienced by Tshivhase and Ganyonga with respect to social and political change in their various chiefdoms. ...

Appendix One: Genealogy of Tshivhase Chiefs

pdf iconDownload PDF (32.1 KB)
pp. 104-

Appendix Two: Structure of Traditional Government in Tshivhase

pdf iconDownload PDF (32.2 KB)
pp. 105-

Appendix Three: Genealogy of Bali-Nyonga Chiefs

pdf iconDownload PDF (31.9 KB)
pp. 106-

Appendix Four: Structure of Traditional Government in Bali-Nyonga

pdf iconDownload PDF (36.9 KB)
pp. 107-

Endnotes

pdf iconDownload PDF (145.7 KB)
pp. 108-117

References

pdf iconDownload PDF (116.9 KB)
pp. 118-122

Back Cover

pdf iconDownload PDF (242.3 KB)
 


E-ISBN-13: 9789956716005
Print-ISBN-13: 9789956558643

Page Count: 140
Publication Year: 2009