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The Possessed and the DispossessedSpirits, Identity, and Power in a Madagascar Migrant Town$
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Lesley Sharp

Print publication date: 1994

Print ISBN-13: 9780520080010

Published to California Scholarship Online: May 2012

DOI: 10.1525/california/9780520080010.001.0001

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Toward a Reassessment of the Possessed and the Dispossesed

(p.276) Conclusion
The Possessed and the Dispossessed

Lesley A. Sharp

University of California Press

This chapter reevaluates a number of assumptions that have been critical throughout this work. It has sought to explore the manner in which symbolic power may extend beyond the temporary realm of ritual. Thus, how might religious experience be politically charged and have long-term effects on everyday life? If one assumes the perspective of Ambanja's inhabitants, tromba possession is not a peripheral experience, but a significant force within indigenous culture. The significance of tromba can only fully be understood if it is explored in relation to indigenous notions of identity, which operate on personal, social, and cultural levels.

Keywords:   power, ritual, possession, social status, Ambanja, tromba, culture, identity

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