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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Why the Anufo Do Not Eat Frogmeat: The Importance of Taboo-Making for Development Work
Author:Kirby, Jon P.
Periodical:African Affairs: The Journal of the Royal African Society
Geographic term:Ghana
popular beliefs
Peoples of Africa (Ethnic Groups)
Development and Technology
Cultural Roles
Sex Roles
Religion and Witchcraft
External link:https://www.jstor.org/stable/722866
Abstract:This paper shows that taboo making has its owa logic in promoting and balancing the total human environment within a cultural system, and that sometimes new taboos arise in response to serious imbalances within social and environmental structures. It analyses the explanatory text accompanying a recent prohibition against the eating of frogmeat among the Anufo of northern Ghana showing how the prohibition relates to recent changes in their social structure, land tenure systems, rules of ownership, ways of organizing and assigning labour, and economic production. The ways in which these changing structures affect one another are examined, and the mythic prohibition is explained in terms of these economic, domestic and political imbalances, noting the instrumental and expressive roles of the taboo/myth and pointing out possible applications for development planning. Notes, ref.