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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:The Spell of Oral History: A Case Study from Northern Igboland
Author:Afigbo, Adiele E.ISNI
Periodical:History in Africa
Geographic term:Nigeria
oral history
Education and Oral Traditions
History and Exploration
Peoples of Africa (Ethnic Groups)
External link:http://muse.jhu.edu/journals/history_in_africa/v033/33.1afigbo.pdf
Abstract:This article examines the continuing power of oral history among the northern Igbo of Nigeria, focusing on the village group of Ihuwe, currently spelled as Ihube. Ihuwe belongs to the Otanchara clan of the Elugwu Igbo. Otanchara comprises some eleven village groups (or 'regular states'), all of which accept Ihuwe as their 'father'. In the early 20th century, Ihuwe sociopolitical culture had to face the challenges which accompanied the imposition of British rule. The British appointed a local representative (warrant chief) from the Umeojiaku family, thereby neglecting the position of the royal family in Eziama. This resulted in a chieftaincy struggle in which Eziama was outmanoeuvred. However, in the 1970s a struggle over political authority broke out again on the basis of different versions of oral history. The author explains the spell of oral history in this community in terms of its mainly agricultural character with a focus on land. The supposed litigious nature of the Igbo is suggested as another explanatory factor. Notes, ref. [ASC Leiden abstract]