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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:From Warriors to Migrants: Critical Perspectives on Early Migrations among the Zarma of Niger
Author:Painter, Thomas M.
Periodical:Africa: Journal of the International African Institute
Geographic term:Ghana
Peoples of Africa (Ethnic Groups)
History and Exploration
Urbanization and Migration
External link:https://www.jstor.org/stable/1159872
Abstract:In the 'Journal de la Société des Africanistes' of 1956 Jean Rouch summarized the historical changes that led Zarma warriors from the south-west of what is now Niger, and who were active as mercenaries in northern Gold Coast and Gurunsi during the 19th century, to begin yearly migrations to southern areas of the Gold Coast around the turn of the century. On the basis of case study material this article re-examines some of the evidence available on the origins of Zarma migrations and points out major gaps left by Rouch in his presentation concerning conditions in Niger. Particularly it is argued that a clear picture of the transition from warriors to migrants in Niger requires that we examine the specific mechanisms of primitive accumulation - of force - in relation to harsh conditions of production and social reproduction and not stop at descriptions of an adventurous warrior tradition responding to new opportunities. Bibliogr., notes, ref., sum. in French. (Revised version of a paper presented at the 1984 meeting of the African Studies Association in Los Angeles.)