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Medium 9780253017437

8 Evil and the Art of Revenge in the Mandara Mountains

Foreword by David Parkin Edited by Will Indiana University Press ePub


It is always a dramatic moment during a funeral dance, when the corpse is lifted over the wall and placed on the shoulders of the smith. At the funeral dance of Zra Wuvè, the crowd had been warming up for the dance as usual, the mourning kinsmen brandishing their spears, the women ululating and scraping calabashes over their iron skirts, while inside, the deceased was being clothed and decorated for the dance. When the corpse of Zra Wuvè came in sight and a smith climbed over the wall in order to carry the body, the crowd followed the drummers toward the compound to witness how their dead relative was hoisted on the shoulders of the young smith. Finally, Zra sat high and mighty on the smith’s shoulders, in full view of his admiring kinsmen, when suddenly a woman stepped up and shouted: “Such is the taste of death.” What then happened I will not quickly forget. When the young smith recognized Masi,1 the widow of the late Tizhè who was a lineage brother of the deceased, he stopped right in his first steps and put Zra down. Immediately, the drums fell silent, and the people started to ask what happened. Then the word got around what Masi had said, and all participants put down their lances and clubs, spoke to each other in whispers, and quickly went away. After all, everybody already knew what had happened with Masi: she “had gone to Wuta,” implying that this death of Zra Wuvè was a result of magical revenge, a suspicion that had already been voiced in the village. Within minutes, the place was empty but for some older smiths, the corpse, and me. The smiths quickly unwrapped the body and two of them took the body to a nearby stand of trees—quite close to the compound, in fact. In haste, they dug a shallow grave, dumped the body in it, and filled it up, just covering the corpse with some earth and stones. To be honest, I was shocked with this abrupt ending of a funeral. In Kapsiki, one’s funeral is the best day of one’s life, an outpouring of grief that forms the highlight of village life, a celebration of a lasting identity of the deceased and the village. Suddenly, Zra Wuvè was not only found guilty of the ultimate transgression in Kapsiki life, but also he was defined as a nonperson, someone without identity who should not have “been there,” who in retrospect had no right to a life. His name (Wuvè means shit2) now became an ironic commentary. The name had been given to him at birth for a completely different reason, but “nomen est omen” and his end did justice to his name.

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Medium 9780253019080

14. Family Pictures at an Exhibition: History, Autobiography, and the Museum Exhibit on Jewish Łódź “In Mrs. Goldberg’s Kitchen”

Edited by Jeffrey Veidlinger Indiana University Press ePub


In my parents’ home any time was a story time. Sure, sometimes tales were told during leisurely strolls through old Łódź; other times over dessert at the old-fashioned café at the Grand Hotel. But most often they unfolded at my parents’ dining table—the hearth of family and social life—during the carefully choreographed meals that organized my parents’ retired lives around food. Some stories were narrated during breakfast, while we took delight in lox and matias herring (good herring is better than the best lox, Dad would say), accompanied by the obligatory single shot of medicinal cognac that was purported to cure several of Dad’s old-age ailments. (If the conversation was particularly enjoyable, an additional shot of cognac was permissible.) But the most abundant storytelling came between the midday and evening meals—sometime around 4 or 5 pm when my parents would take their late-afternoon snack: a gleyzele tey un a shtikl kukhn. It was during that hour, while the skies slowly darkened, that they talked to me about their lives, which were divided by di milkhume (the war) into the idyllic time before it (far der milkhume) and the real time after (nakh der milkhume). The most fascinating of their stories took place during the in-between time (beys der milkhume), which comprised the surreal experience of their wartime Soviet exile. The words beys der milkhume also screamed out the silent horror of the slaughter of our families: silent because our relatives who stayed behind in the Łódź Ghetto did not survive to tell their stories.1 My parents could only echo that silence and tell me of the Immense Absence they experienced. They continued to carefully study any archival photographs from the Łódź Ghetto and the camps that they got their hands on, in hopes of recognizing one of the haggard faces in them as that of a loved one, searching for the smallest clue that would lead them to our families’ untold stories.

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Medium 9781574411508

CHAPTER THREE Roadside Memorial Case Studies

Holly Everett University of North Texas Press PDF

38 •


Roadside Memorial


Case Studies

As Austin’s population and urban sprawl increases, more and more people find themselves commuting to jobs in the city, with as much as three hours a day spent in transit. Oftentimes their daily drive takes them past at least one roadside memorial. Between April 1997 and January 1998, I documented thirty-five memorial sites in and around Austin (Fig. 3.1). A number of these memorials have already been dismantled or significantly altered while new ones have been constructed.

As noted in the previous chapter, MADD markers, such as the crosses pictured here, have until very recently been the only roadside memorials approved for the Austin district by the Texas Department of Transportation. Jennifer Solter founded one of the first MADD chapters in Texas, the Heart of Texas Chapter, following the death of her daughter Sara Jayne Solter in 1981. In the early-to-mid-1980s, all MADD crosses in Texas were built by a Houston resident who had lost a son to a drunk driving incident. Solter erected one of these white crosses in 1984, under the canopy of a poplar tree at the edge of a residential area.

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Medium 9780253330178

V. Loose, Idle and Disorderly

David Barry Gaspar Indiana University Press ePub

Robert Olwell

Black and White all mix’d together

Inconstant, strange, unhealthful weather

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

The markets dear and little money

Large potatoes, sweet as honey

Water Bad, past all drinking

Men and Women without thinking

Every thing at a high price

But rum, hominy and rice

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Many a bargain, if you strike it,

This is Charles-town, how do you like it?

—A Description of Charleston in 17691



An old Charleston adage holds that a person standing at the intersection of Broad and Meeting streets in the center of the old town can turn about and see embodied in the buildings on each corner of the crossroads the various “laws” that govern the city. On the southeast corner stands St. Michael’s Church, representing God’s law, on the west side are the Federal Post Office and the Courthouse, representing man’s law, and on the northeast corner stands the old Bank of the United States, representing the law of money or the market.2

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Medium 9781626567924

7. Love of God

Qazi, Farhana Berrett-Koehler Publishers ePub

We wandered together under moody gray skies, stepping into the Turkish neighborhood in East London. The smell of sugar and stale coffee permeated the air. Carrying a tote bag, her hair pulled back in a scarf, a thirty-something woman named Zufie guided me inside an ethnic restaurant with cushions on the floor and lanterns from an imperial era hanging above us. Earlier, we had prayed together at the Turkish mosque nearby, our heads bowed on an ocher-red rug, the walls decorated with bright teal-green leaves, reminding me of the interior of Istanbul’s famous Blue Mosque.

If there was a voice that did not need words, it was hers. In the 1990s, when I first met Zufie, I was enrolled in classes at a local university near Hyde Park and lived on Coventry Street. My classes included British Theater and Introduction to the Bible, taught by a priest. When we met, I recognized our differences to be a gift, rather than a barrier to friendship. In time, we made promises to travel together and to honor our new togetherness without judgment, no matter where we might go. Hers was a different world from my American Southern life. She found calm in the midst of bigotry, shadows of doubt, and shame from unwarranted attacks on Islam. But her calming presence and mindful living—originating from her love of God and His creation—helped Zufie discover Islam with grace, leaving no room for hostility or cold-heartedness for those who either demonized her faith or indulged in religious extremism.

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Medium 9780253015778

Conclusion Costume as Elective Identity

Pravina Shukla Indiana University Press ePub

MY APPROACH TO DRESS, EXEMPLIFIED IN THIS BOOKS CASE studies of costume, is folkloristic, an approach that uses ethnographic methods to situate actions in the contexts of creation, communication, and consumption.1 If material culture is defined as “culture made material,”2 and dress is a form of material culture, then dress (or costume) can be read as material manifestations of culture. Costume requires creators, so study must recognize individuals and individual interpretations of the costume traditions, standards, and goals. In focusing on the individual in the creative act, material culture studies combine attention to the object—its form, technology, and aesthetics—with attention to contexts of production and performance, where influences, processes, and procedures of evaluation come together. In acknowledging the centrality of contexts, we note those that are visible and tangible and those that are hidden in the mind yet fill the acts and products with meaning.

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Medium 9780253018595

The Newly Black Americans

IU Press Journals Indiana University Press ePub

African immigrants and black America

THERE IS A moment in Dinaw Mengestu’s well-received novel The Beautiful Things That Heaven Bears (2007) where the narrator, Sepha—Ethiopian, refugee, victim of an anomie that is as Naipaulian as it is stereotypically modernist—encounters traces of Pan-Africanism and, what continues to be celebrated in scholarly and cultural circles (often uncritically) as, black Diaspora. Walking through neighborhoods in Washington, D.C. convulsed between decline and renaissance, where the domestic migrations of gentrification speak to the displacements of post-Independence Africa, Sepha encounters amongst the abandoned lots and littered condoms, the prostitutes and alcoholics, the memory of black transnational solidarity, or at least its symbols. The memory trigger in question is “a black-owned bookstore called Madame X,” where once were Afrocentric poetry readings, shared plates of “yam patties,” and no doubt the sound of jazz, reggae, hip-hop, or even Afrobeat.

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Medium 9781605093048

4 Falling

Kahane, Adam Berrett-Koehler Publishers ePub

WE FALL DOWN PAINFULLY when, like a scarecrow or a marionette, our two legs become disconnected from each other. We fall down when our power and our love become polarized: when our power is without love and our love is without power. We fall down when, intentionally or unintentionally, we make the elementary and common error of treating the relationship between power and love, which is a dilemma, as if it was a choice.

By 2003, Generon was working confidently on implementing its Global Leadership Initiative. We wanted to address some of the world’s toughest challenges and to develop and demonstrate our change lab approach. That summer we got a great opportunity: a European food company executive asked us to help him organize a project to find and implement initiatives to reduce child malnutrition in India.

As we started to develop this project, we discovered that in the field of international public health, India stands out as a glaring and distressing anomaly. Fifty-five million, or 43 percent, of Indian children under five years old are underweight (this is one of the highest rates in the world), and 35 percent of all the underweight children in the world are in India.1 Furthermore, in spite of having one of the world’s largest government programs aimed at solving this problem (wiith a budget of over $1 billion per year), the Indian rate of child malnutrition has come down only slowly.

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Medium 9780253015969

1 Movers, Shakers, and Boomers

Jo B. Paoletti Indiana University Press ePub

In 1970 the Bayonne High School class of 1960 gathered for their reunion. Journalist Steven Roberts told their story as a participant observer, interviewing his old classmates and comparing notes with them, in a feature article in the Sunday New York Times. One common theme emerged: the class of 1960 had “just missed out” on the great changes of the upcoming decade. As one alumnus commented, “The last five years have really been the turning point.” What had changed? Practically everything.

Between 1965 and 1970 the “police action” in Vietnam had escalated to a war, the civil rights movement had blossomed into Black Power and Nixon’s “Southern Strategy,” Reefer Madness (1936) became a cult laughing stock on the college film circuit, and Playboy discovered pubic hair. The women at the reunion discussed their marriages and children through the new lens of second-wave feminism. “We had been shaped,” Roberts concluded, “in the dying years of a world that no longer exists.” The basic assumptions instilled in them in the 1950s—“respect authority . . . sex is dirty”—had been swept away.1

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Medium 9781626562905

5 Children of a Living Earth

Korten, David C. Berrett-Koehler Publishers ePub

To paraphrase and expand on Carl Sagan: If you wish to make a human from scratch, you must first invent a Living Universe that in turn births a Living Earth. An ambitious undertaking, it took 13.8 billion years.

The Living Universe had to get a great many conditions right to create a home for humans. None of the three familiar cosmologies captures the true wonder of this miracle or the significance of our need to honor and maintain the conditions essential to our own existence.

The fabricated Sacred Money and Markets story misses, even denies, our dependence on Living Earth. The authentic Sacred Life and Living Earth story embraces this dependence and the implications for how we humans organize to make our living.

Scientists estimate that there may be as many as 40 billion habitable Earth-size planets in the galaxy.1 Carbon-based life has likely emerged on others. We are only certain, however, that it has emerged on one. We still have only the vaguest idea of how it happened.

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Medium 9780253018816

8 The Cross-Over: Originality, Hybridity, Metamorphosis

Richard Werbner Indiana University Press ePub

In this chapter, I explore the second archive, that of hooved divination, in its actual re-creations. First, as a source for one whole poem, this archive appears in the diviner’s presentation of personal significance and his own identity. Second, there is a charismatic crossover, encompassing diverse modes along with classic wisdom divination. In the city, some diviners originally from Moremi village, have very recently combined wisdom divination with exotic forms, including Christian spiritual practices. Young prophets in Gaborone’s Apostolic churches, who reform received Christianity, are also engaging, somewhat uneasily, with legacies from divination, (see Werbner 2008, 2011a, 2011b). But at Moremi village, only Morebodi mastered charismatic divination until his death in 2008, bringing together very different traditions of consultation. Morebodi’s re-creation of charismatic divination was exceptional—a remarkable feat of moral and spiritual imagination.

Morebodi’s sense of his own inspiration was strong and intense: that he was specially chosen by his ancestors, by the badimo, the divinities of the dead, to diagnose, heal, and enhance his clients’ dignity. Dazzling, somewhat eccentric, and charismatic in performance, he commanded modes to suit the moment: from divination with hooved lots to exotic mimesis in song and dance, to Bible searching and Christian prayer in Tswana, to the oracle within the cult of Sedimo.1 With all of these modes, he was a master of the crossover in divination.

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Medium 9781574412383

“High Flyin’ Times”

Kenneth L. Untiedt, editor University of North Texas Press PDF



AND A PIPER TRI-PACER by Barbara Pybas

Our High Flyin’ times were good years, the late 1950s and early

’60s, a healthy, optimistic, happy era. Even with the Cuban Crisis and Kennedy’s death, this ten-year folklore period seemed less complicated and stressful than the ensuing decades of the Vietnam

War and national turmoil. Perhaps, to the young, obstacles are undaunting and overcome readily. This account is neither about barnstorming nor acrobatics, but for the pure enjoyment of flying and a good excuse to use it in a farming-ranching operation. DFW

Airport was non-existent and the rigid FAA rules not in place; even a radio was not a requirement. VFR (visual flight rules) was sufficient for little planes.

Jay Pybas was bit by the flying bug in his mid-thirties. After returning from World War II Marine Corps service, completing a stint with GI Bill college time and marrying an Oklahoma A&M co-ed, he found his way back to Texas. For ten years he struggled to revive a Red River bottomland farm released by the U.S. Government. This Cooke County area had been used as the infantry and artillery training area for Camp Howze during the war. It had grown to a jungle with disuse but, nevertheless, was fertile and promising. By hard work, stamina and extreme fortitude, in ten years the valley became beautifully productive.

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Medium 9781574413205

Gone A'Hunting

Edited by Kenneth L. Untiedt University of North Texas Press PDF



8:14 AM

Page 3

GONE A’ HUNTING by Len Ainsworth

Bye 0, Baby Bunting

Daddy’s gone a’ hunting

For to get a rabbit skin

For to wrap his baby in.

That’s likely not the way it was written, but that’s the way I remember the lullaby sung by my mother—and the only one I tried to sing to my kids. Fortunately, they were too young to remember how badly

I sang. I probably remember my mother singing it to my sister, five years younger; surely I wouldn’t remember her singing it to me as a baby. But the theme of hunting has resonated in our family for several generations. My maternal grandfather, Papaw Charley, was a great hand for singing and hunting, and mother must have heard the lullaby many times, sung to her younger siblings.

My paternal grandfather gave me his .410 gauge shotgun when

I was ten years old, and my parents let me go dove hunting alone with a handful of shells in the mesquite brush extending into our small West Texas town. I had to stalk my quarry carefully with the single-shot gun, and get close and locate one perched on a tree limb without other branches in the way. More than once I have been fooled by a nesting dove acting hurt and fluttering ever farther from her nest and then suddenly flying away. But a few unwary birds did fall. I don’t remember coming home on those first hunts with more than one bird at a time. I suppose I was so excited that I didn’t keep looking after I got one, or perhaps I used up my few shells getting it. I’m sure my mother or dad helped clean the first few birds, and they were cooked as the prize they were. I learned early that you were to clean and eat your kill.

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Medium 9781626567276

Chapter Four: Check your privilege (and your ego)

Jana, Tiffany; Freeman, Matthew Berrett-Koehler Publishers ePub

There would be no bias if there were no differences. You can’t overcome bias if you can’t acknowledge that other people see the world differently than you do. And in order to do that, you must recognize that your perspective is not the only one, and that you are highly unlikely to be right all the time. That means checking your ego, and also acknowledging your privilege. Unchecked bias can look like privilege, so it’s important to take the time to differentiate the two.

It doesn’t matter who you are: if you are reading this book, you are privileged in some way. Privilege, in this context, simply means an advantage available to one group that isn’t available to everyone. You, for example, can read. According to UNESCO, that alone puts you ahead of 10 to 20 percent of people over age 15 worldwide. Why the 10 percent disparity? If you are a man, you are more likely to be literate.

Generally speaking, privilege blinds you to the challenges that others face. Suffering through a challenge helps you build empathy for others in a similar situation. So, for example, if you or a loved one has suffered through a chronic illness, you’re more likely to identify with the pain of another in a similar situation. The privilege of relative health doesn’t make you a bad person, but it makes it harder (but not impossible!) to understand the daily complexities and challenges of navigating life with a chronic condition. And so it is with identity-based privilege. If you’ve never feared being mistreated by the police because of the color of your skin, it can be challenging to fully understand the constant fear that haunts many people of color in their interactions with law enforcement. If we are to build authentic relationships across difference, we must do the hard work of recognizing our privilege so we can navigate the resulting blind spots more thoughtfully. The starting point is, once again, self-awareness.

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Medium 9781574414325

Chapter 9 – Money

Jorge Antonio Renaud The University of North Texas Press ePub



Let’s talk about what got many of us in prison: money.

First, TDCJ inmates are not paid. No matter how hard we work, for how many years, we do not receive a penny. Various groups have tried to convince Texas lawmakers to pay inmates a tiny daily stipend. Texas is one of only two or three states that does not pay its inmates. But it takes a courageous legislator to tell his constituents, “Yes, I know these guys robbed and raped and sold drugs and carjacked—I still think we need to pay them.”

The legislator might be risking political suicide before he could explain the benefits of making sure that by paying inmates, you could ensure that many don’t come back. That would make paying inmates cost efficient, on both monetary terms and humanitarian grounds, because many of us would then not commit the murders and robberies that leave so many innocent victims in our wake. But those benefits are lost in the hazy, blood-red world created by prosecutors bent on convictions now in exchange for misery later.

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