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Living “in Line”

Living “in Line”

(p.56) Chapter Five: Living “in Line”
Worries of the Heart
University of Chicago Press

This chapter tells Shem Olovoga's story about his family's eviction from their house by Christians who sought to establish a village (“a line”) on his father's land. Olovoga was known in the village as a good storyteller. The evictions obviously bred ill will: the evicted felt their rights utterly violated, and those they went to live with felt infringed upon and, worse still, infringed upon by distant clan members to whom they felt they owed little. The family of James Keverenge was also evicted in a manner similar to that of Olovoga's parents. The parents of the young Christian men, especially the widowed mothers, felt wronged by their self-righteous and often imperious sons. In the eyes of the locals, the physical appearance of the Christian villages was dramatic. Christian masculinity cohered nicely with Maragoli masculinity. By the mid-1920s, the men who had moved to the Christian villages were flourishing economically.

Keywords:   Shem Olovoga, Christians, James Keverenge, Christian villages, Christian masculinity, Maragoli masculinity

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