Memories of the Slave Trade: Ritual and the Historical Imagination in Sierra Leone / Edition 1

Memories of the Slave Trade: Ritual and the Historical Imagination in Sierra Leone / Edition 1

by Rosalind Shaw
     
 

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ISBN-10: 0226751325

ISBN-13: 9780226751320

Pub. Date: 05/28/2002

Publisher: University of Chicago Press


In a work that challenges recurring claims that Africans felt (and still feel) no sense of moral responsibility concerning the sale of slaves, Rosalind Shaw traces memories of the slave trade in Temne-speaking communities in Sierra Leone. While the slave-trading past is rarely remembered in explicit verbal accounts, it is often made vividly present in such forms

Overview


In a work that challenges recurring claims that Africans felt (and still feel) no sense of moral responsibility concerning the sale of slaves, Rosalind Shaw traces memories of the slave trade in Temne-speaking communities in Sierra Leone. While the slave-trading past is rarely remembered in explicit verbal accounts, it is often made vividly present in such forms as rogue spirits, diviners' visions, the imagery of divination techniques, and accounts of an invisible city of witches whose affluence was built on the theft of human lives.

Drawing on extensive fieldwork and archival research, Shaw argues that memories of the slave trade have shaped (and been reshaped by) experiences of colonialism, postcolonialism, and the country's ten-year rebel war. These ritual and visionary memories make hitherto invisible realities manifest, forming a prism through which past and present mutually configure each other.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780226751320
Publisher:
University of Chicago Press
Publication date:
05/28/2002
Edition description:
1
Pages:
304
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.90(d)

Table of Contents

List of Illustrations
Acknowledgments
Note on Temne Orthography
Introduction
1. The Atlanticizing of Sierra Leone
2. Spirit Memoryscape
3. Roads to Life, Roads to Death
Materializing Memory through Divination
4. Diviners' Knowledge, Diviners' Lives
5. A Thing under the Water
6. The Hidden Ritual Process
7. The Production of Witchcraft/Witchcraft as Production
8. Cannibal Transformations
Experiencing Colonialism in the Sierra Leone Hinterland
9. The Politician and the Diviner
Conclusion: Remembering Modernity
Notes
Bibliography
Index

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