12. - 14. Mai 2006

16. Die Dawoodi Bohras - eine indische Gemeinschaft in Ostafrika

Eva Paul
Institut für Ethnologie der Freien Universität Berlin

The following article gives an example of Migrations around Indian Ocean and can hopefully illustrate...

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...the fact that culture is not necessarily rooted in a specific territory. My focus will be on the Dawoodi Bohra Community, a Shia Mustali Muslim sect. Since the mid 19th century, members of the Bohra Community left from India, where the head of the community is still residing, and settled in East Africa. Contrary to the indentured labourers who came to South Africa, the Bohras came on their own expenses and as a trading elite. Up to now they are very prominent in the business sector of Tanzania and Kenya. The local population considers the Bohras to be Indian outsiders who are exploiting the country. This is also due to the fact that the Bohra Community indeed tries to stay separate. But the Bohras have become localised and have left their mark on their East African surroundings. The spiritual leader of the community is of great importance for his followers and guides them in every aspect of their life. He visits East Africa on a regular basis and helps to develop the connections between the various communities around the world. The Dawoodi Bohras are a very good example for a well-organised religious transnational organisation, which adapts to local circumstances. So far, they have been neglected in the field of African studies, which shows that the academy does not consider them authentically African enough.

17. Klischee und Realität
fotografische Erfahrungsfragmente von Aufenthalten in Afrika. Festrede anlässlich der Ausstellungseröffnung am 8. Mai 2006

Peter André Rodekuhr
Institut für Afrikanistik der Universität zu Köln

Die beiden Schlüsselwörter im Titel unserer Ausstellung – Klischee und Realität – führen uns geradewegs zur zentralen Frage, die dem Ausstellungskonzept als Motto vorangestellt ist:...

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...Können wir ein realistisches Bild von Afrika haben? Diese Frage steht am Anfang einer jeden Reflektion über Afrika, denn alle geläufigen Vorstellungen, die ‚man im allgemeinen’ heutzutage von Afrika hat, sind zuallererst bildhafter Natur. Dies trifft umso mehr zu, als wir in einer Zeit leben, in der, wie wohl nie zuvor, die Realität durch Bilder bestimmt wird; in einer Zeit, in der uns Bilder in ihrer medialen Flut mit immer neuen Realitäten versorgen, in der es Bilder sind, die Realitäten erst legitimieren, und die immer dringendere Frage danach aufwerfen, ob es hinter diesen Bildern, also außerhalb ihrer, überhaupt noch eine, oder vielleicht sogar mehrere Realitäten gibt?

18. Zur Anlage eines modernen Schulwörterbuches im Rumanyo (Bantusprache Namibias)

Marc Seifert
Institut für Afrikanistik der Universität zu Köln

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19. Die Neugründung von Somaliland - Ein endogener Staatsbildungsprozess am Horn von Afrika

Matthias Seifert
Arnold-Bergstraesser-Institut Freiburg / Albert-Ludwigs-Universität Freiburg

The article deals with the nation-building process in the former British protectorate Somaliland since 1991...

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...With Somalia dissolving after the fall of Siad Barré, Somaliland has grown into a functioning nation in the past 15 years. Somaliland gave itself a constitution, has developed working institutions and has conducted three free and fair elections so far. The article shows how the lack of external assistance and the domination of local elements has contributed to the successful process of nationbuilding. Special attention is given to the councils of elders (guurti) that contributed significantly to the peace and reconciliation process. Being an important part of Somali society, they gave the initial impulse for the peace process. The article demonstrates which functions they fulfilled since the independence of Somaliland and how they developed from a traditional apolitical into a constitutional element. Starting as a grassroots peace initiative they were integrated into a modern constitution as the lower house of parliament. It will be shown how their functions changed over time and that their relevance sank with growing institutionalization. Being an integrative and peace-promoting element at first, they took over different functions, similar to modern political institutions. It will be demonstrated how this integration of traditional elements leads to Somaliland being a hybrid system, incorporating both traditional and modern elements. This should raise new questions about the possibilities that could arise from integrating traditional elements into externally supported nation-building.

20. Lebensweltorientierte soziale Arbeit mit Straßenkindern in Kamerun

Sabine Spitzer

Das Problem „Straßenkinder“ ist ein Phänomen, das in unterschiedlichen Ausprägungen schon lange existiert,...

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...und auf das Gesellschaften verschiedene Reaktionen zeigten. In den letzten Jahrzehnten jedoch lassen sich Tendenzen aufzeigen, die ein gesteigertes Interesse an Straßenkindern implizieren. Die zunehmende Präsenz dieses Themas in der Öffentlichkeit dient als Indiz für eine stattfindende Veränderung diesbezüglich auf gesellschaftlicher Ebene, die Diskussion von Stichworten wie „Kinderrechte“ und „Kinderpolitik“ im Rahmen der UN Kinderrechtskonvention lässt auf ein zunehmendes Problembewusstsein sowohl auf politischer als auch auf pädagogischer Ebene schließen und pädagogischen Handlungsbedarf notwendig erscheinen.

21. Objekte als Spiegel kolonialer Beziehungen - Das Sammeln von Ethnographica zur Zeit der deutschen kolonialen Expansion in Ostafrika (1884-1914)

Kristin Weber
Zentrum für Höhere Studien der Universität Leipzig

Material culture objects were of crucial importance for the knowledge production about colonized societies.

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Ethnographic museums which were established in Europe during the second half of the 19th century formed important centres where such objects - arriving in great numbers from the colonial territories - were accumulated. Once they were fitted in ready-made scientific systems of classification and interpretation these objects appeared to represent merely certain cultural aspects of their respective society of origin located somewhere outside historical processes. However, the aim of this article is to briefly chart African material culture objects as integral parts of discursive fields of power, history and identity in the context of ethnographic collecting during the German colonial expansion in East Africa and thus re-contextualise them historically. The collecting policies of the Museum für Völkerkunde in Berlin and the predominant scientific approaches to these objects as Ethnographica at this time serve as the main starting point.

22. The Islamization of the Beja until the 19th century

Jan Záhorík
Department of Anthropology, University of West Bohemia, Pilsen

The Beja tribes belong to the oldest known nations not only in the Sudan but also in the whole Africa.

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Their history goes back to the antiquity and nowadays they inhabit the eastern parts of the Islamic Republic of Sudan, the northern triangle of Eritrea, the Ababda tribe lives in the southern parts of Egypt around Assuan, and small enclaves of the Beja can be found in the northern tip of Ethiopia. In this paper I will try to show the process of Islamization of these Cushitic people and to reinterpret as well as to present less known or insufficiently accented facts. There are several uncertainties that require attention. First of all, the date of the beginning of Islamization differs according to several scholars and authors. Second, it is difficult to find some adequate conclusions of the early Islamization of the Beja while we know almost nothing about the extent of this process in the 9th and 10th centuries. Even though we have some direct sources from Arab scholars such as Ibn Battuta, al-Mas'udi, Ibn Jubair and some others, the information about Islam among the Beja differ, so we have no clear idea of the early Islamization of the Beja tribes. In my opinion, we cannot consider the conversion to Islam a quick, but rather a gradual process caused by the intrusion of the Arab tribes since the 9th century and by the increasing importance of the Beja camel guiders and caravan route leaders. Moreover, as examples of some other peoples show, the conversion to Islam or Christianity is always slower in the case of nomadic people than in the case of sedentary population. To sum up, we can talk about beginnings of Islamization of the Beja as early as in the 10th century but we should think of the 18th and the 19th centuries as the final phase of Islamization of the Beja, according to some scholars researching Islam. The differences in practicing Islam between some of the Beja tribes indicate that Islamization of these nomadic people was not a unified and sudden process.
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