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The Intestines of the StateYouth, Violence, and Belated Histories in the Cameroon Grassfields$
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Nicolas Argenti

Print publication date: 2007

Print ISBN-13: 9780226026114

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: March 2013

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226026138.001.0001

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Embodied Histories: Royal Investiture, Masking, and Remembering

Embodied Histories: Royal Investiture, Masking, and Remembering

(p.121) Chapter Five Embodied Histories: Royal Investiture, Masking, and Remembering
The Intestines of the State
University of Chicago Press

This chapter examines three performances closely associated with some of the major ceremonies of the palace of Oku, focusing on the significance of their present form in light of what we know of the practices that gave the slave trade its particular experiential or lived reality in the Cameron Grassfields and beyond. It suggests that the identification between masks and cannibal witches points to the close connection between masking and the slave trade. The chapter also contends that performances of masked dance groups bring out the association of masks with slaves and caravan porters in an embodied form.

Keywords:   slave trade, ceremonies, palace of Oku, Cameroon Grassfields, masks, cannibal witches, masked dance groups, caravan porters

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