Questioning Misfortune: The Pragmatics of Uncertainty in Eastern Uganda / Edition 1by Susan Reynolds Whyte
Pub. Date: 01/28/2011
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
This study of adversity and its social causes in rural Uganda considers how people deal with life's uncertainties--sickness, suffering, marital problems, failure, and death. Divination may identify causes of misfortune, ranging from ancestors and spirits to sorcerers. Sufferers and their families will then try out a variety of remedial measures, including pharmaceuticals, sorcery substances, and sacrifices. But remedies often fail, and doubt and uncertainty persist. The peril of AIDS can also be understood in terms of the existing pattern of uncertainty.
Table of ContentsIntroduction; Part I. An Uncertain World: 1. Misfortune and uncertainty; 2. The pursuit of health and prosperity; 3. Going to ask; Part II. 'What You Cannot See': The Revelations of Spirits: 4. At home with the dead; 5. The fertility of clanship; 6. Little spirits and child survival; Part III. 'You Will Know Me': The Opacity of Humans: 7. Speaking of morality; 8. Substances and secrecy; Part IV. The Pragmatics of Uncertainty: 9. More questions; 10. Consequences. Notes; References; Index.
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