Concubines and Power: Five Hundred Years in a Northern by Heidi J. Nast

By Heidi J. Nast

Drawing on her box paintings within the palace among 1988 and 2003, Nast (international stories, DePaul U., Chicago) provides a old geographical account of royal concubinage within the enormous palace of Kano, Nigeria, outfitted approximately 1500 and this present day inhabited via over 1000 humans. Her examine demonstrates how human geographical tools can be utilized i

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28 In West Africa, one of the most documented spatial instances of sexed divisions relates to the architectural practices of the agrarian Dogon of Burkina Faso and Mali, a cultural group originating in the Bandiagara region in the thirteenth or fourteenth century (Dieterlen 1982, 9). Dogon house forms traditionally caricatured the human form, understood as emblematic of universal order. 29 Dogon patriarchs lived communally in a compound in the village center, all compounds built to resemble anthills, symbolic of primordial order (Azuonye 1996, 10-11).

Concubine sources were directly attacked when the British disabled the accumulation of concubines through war. British abolition of nonconcubine forms of slavery also meant that fewer slave men married slave women, such that fewer slave daughters were born and, hence, available to the king as tribute. Moreover, the British eventually Introduction forbade the payment of taxes in anything other than pounds sterling, an act that eroded a foundational part of concubine identity and power, namely control over royal grain.

So as to keep an eye on their numerous women" (1991, 783). My theorizing of the co-emergence of and equivalences between bodily and state-territorial notions of interiority should therefore not be taken to imply that gendered divisions of labor and space never existed in West Africa prior to Islam. 28 In West Africa, one of the most documented spatial instances of sexed divisions relates to the architectural practices of the agrarian Dogon of Burkina Faso and Mali, a cultural group originating in the Bandiagara region in the thirteenth or fourteenth century (Dieterlen 1982, 9).

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