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Witch-hunting and political legitimacy: continuity and change in Green Valley, Lebowa, 1930–91

  • Isak A. Niehaus


Au sujet de l'histoire du village de Green Valley dans le Bantustan sud-africain de Lebowa à travers les six dernières décennies, cet article examine les relations complexes entre la chasse aux sorcieres et l'action politique. Je m'oppose aux notions, courantes en littérature anthropologique, que les acteurs politiques prennent part à la chasse aux sorcières dans un effort pour mystifier l'exploitation ou pour intimider leurs adversaires. De telles notions mettent trop l'accent sur les dimensions instrumen-tales du systeme complexe qu'est la sorcellerie et ne prête pas assez attention a sa dimension existentielle/intrinsique en tant qu'explication personnalisée de l'infor-tune. En prenant entiérement connaissance de cette derniere, la chasse aux sorcières peut être vue comme un effort créatif pur éliminer le mal et éviter l'occurrence du malheur dans le futur. II est débattu ici qu'au cours du temps, les chefs et Camarades ont trouvé qu'il était commode sur le plan politique d'identifier et de punir les sorcières dans leurs efforts pour atteindre la légitimité parmi les villageois.



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