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The Underneath of ThingsViolence, History, and the Everyday in Sierra Leone$
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Mariane Ferme

Print publication date: 2001

Print ISBN-13: 9780520225428

Published to California Scholarship Online: May 2012

DOI: 10.1525/california/9780520225428.001.0001

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Becoming a Kpako

Becoming a Kpako

The Body and the Aesthetics of Power

Chapter:
(p.159) Chapter 5 Becoming a Kpako
Source:
The Underneath of Things
Author(s):

Mariane C. Ferme

Publisher:
University of California Press
DOI:10.1525/california/9780520225428.003.0006

This chapter examines the social construction of the Mende “big people” or kpako in rural Sierra Leone. It explains that the category of big people is gender-inclusive and much has been made in the regional literature of the manifestation of this principle in women's access to political office. It discusses the overall cultural logic that produces big persons, both within and outside the political domain.

Keywords:   big people, Mende, Sierra Leone, kpako, cultural logic

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