Sons of the soil and conquerors: The historical construction of the Dendi border region (West Africa)
AbstractThis article discusses the historical construction of Dendi, a border region now located across Niger, Benin and Nigeria. On the basis of colonial literature and mythological accounts collected in the cities of Gaya, Malanville and Kamba, the paper shows that the Dendi identity is based on the binary opposition between ?indigenous people? and ?conquerors?. Urban foundation myths traditionally present the former as ?sons of the soil?, worshippers of the earth and land, while emphasising the aristocratic origins of the latter, ?who came on foot?. In this, Dendi is comparable to other West African socio-political entities such as Borgu in Benin-Nigeria, Yatenga in Burkina Faso and the Hombori Mountains in Mali; it is however rather different due to the importance of the contemporary borders, which introduced different colonial rules and paths of development.
Download InfoIf you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by CEPS/INSTEAD in its series CEPS/INSTEAD Working Paper Series with number 2011-20.
Length: 28 pages
Date of creation: Feb 2011
Date of revision:
Contact details of provider:
Postal: 3, avenue de la Fonte, L-4364 Esch-sur-Alzette, G.-D. Luxembourg
Phone: 00352 / 58 58 55 - 1
Fax: 00352 / 58 58 55 - 700
Web page: http://www.ceps.lu
More information through EDIRC
oral history; local politic; border regions; cities; Dendi; West Africa;
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2011-03-05 (All new papers)
You can help add them by filling out this form.
reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.Access and download statisticsgeneral information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Begona Levices).
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.