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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:'New' nationalism and autochthony: tales of origin as political cleavage
Author:Bs, MortenISNI
Year:2009
Periodical:Africa Spectrum
Volume:44
Issue:1
Pages:19-38
Language:English
Geographic terms:Ivory Coast - Cte d'Ivoire
Congo (Democratic Republic of)
Liberia
Subjects:national identity
land rights
citizenship
Link:http://journals.sub.uni-hamburg.de/giga/afsp/article/view/27
Abstract:The conflicts in Liberia, Eastern Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and Cte d'Ivoire can be 'read' as 'wars of modernity' as they are concerned with the composition of their respective polities: who is a citizen and who is not. However, these contemporary conflicts are deeply embedded in a long history of violence; integral to this history is the issue of land. Citizenship in itself does not secure access to land, but at the very least it allows those with this status a legitimate entry to the competition for land. There is therefore a direct link between contested citizenship and land rights issues. Drawing on fieldwork material from the above-mentioned countries, this article shows how localized identity narratives under certain circumstances destroy as well as reformulate national identities, and that insight from ethnographic work on autochthonic issues can help us understand conflicts in a broad range of African countries. Bibliogr., notes, ref., sum. in English and German. [Journal abstract]
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